Chapter 17 - Success
”Policymakers and policies make societies and institutions, not the other way around. The United States is a racist nation because it’s policymakers and policies have been racist from the beginning.” Pg. 223
Being an antiracist is going to be a lifetime journey because there will always be policies that have to be checked and ideas evaluated as being racist.
Being an antiracist is supporting antiracist policies or expressing antiracist ideas.
Success is my learning and gaining new perspectives in becoming a better person for those around me. Recognizing my racist ideas and policies that I have supported is good but it will not stop there. This is an ongoing process that will never be complete.
Chapter 16 - Failure
Activist: One who has a record of power or policy change.
Civilizing programs will fail since all racial groups are already on the same cultural level...Healing symptoms instead of changing policies is bound to fail in healing society." Pg. 202
"Challenging the conjoined twins (racism and capitalism) is bound to fail to address economic-racial inequity." Pg. 202
"The problem of race has always been at its core the problem of power, not the problem of immorality of ignorance." Pg. 208
"To fight for mental and moral changes after policy is changed means fighting alongside growing benefits and the dissipation of fears, making it possible for antiracist power to succeed. To fight for mental and moral change as a prerequisite for policy change is to fight against growing fears and apathy, making it almost impossible for antiracist power to succeed." Pg. 208
"Self-critique allows change. Changing shows flexibility. Antiracist power must be flexible to match the flexibility of racist power, propelled only by the craving for power to shape policy in their inequitable interests." Pg. 214
Protest = organizing people for a prolonged campaign that forces policy change
Demonstration = mobilizing people momentarily to publicize a problem
"Unless power cannot economically or politically or professionally afford bad press--as power could not during the Cold War, as power cannot during election season, as power cannot close to bankruptcy--power typically ignores demonstrations." Pg. 215
How can I use my position as an educator and sponsor of my schools Black Student Union? How can I remove barriers for the students to protest racist ideas and policies that they encounter during the school day and school year? I need to continue to learn strategies and solutions to racist ideas and policies.
Chapter 15 - Sexuality
Queer Racism: A powerful collection of racist policies that lead to inequity between race-sexualities and are substantiated by racist ideas about race-sexualities.
Queer Antiracism: A powerful collection of antiracist policies that lead to equity between race-sexualities and are substantiated by antiracist ideas about race-sexualities.
I cannot be an antiracist if I am homophobic or transphobic.
”To be queer antiracist is to serve as an ally to transgender people, to intersex people, to women, to the non-gender-conforming, to homosexuals, to their intersections, meaning listening, learning, and being led by their equalizing ideas, by their equalizing policy campaigns, by their power struggle for equal opportunity.” Pg. 197
I am cisgender straight white male and with this comes privilege. Cisgender means I identify by the sex I was assigned at birth. I need to reflect on how these areas affect how I am accepted in the spaces that I enter.
Chapter 14 - Gender
Gender Racism: A powerful collection of racist policies that lead to inequity between race-genders and are substantiated by racist ideas about race-genders.
Gender Antiracism: A powerful collection of antiracist policies that lead to equity between race-genders and are substantiated by anti-racist ideas about race-genders.
To be antiracist is to reject not only the hierarchy of races but of race-genders.
To truly be antiracist is to be feminist.
To be antiracist (and feminist) is to level the different race-genders, is to root the inequities between the equal race-genders in the policies of gender racism.
To Read/Research List
Alice Walker's "The Color Purple"
Combahee River Collective and Statement
Ida B. Wells
Anna Julia Cooper
Toni Cade Bambara
Kimberlé Williams Crenshaw
I am living with three strong women. I am the husband of a strong, determined and loving woman. My wife has worked so hard and overcome so many barriers to provide for our family. Our two young girls are strong, smart, beautiful, funny, and compassionate. Whitney, my wife, has earned everything she has without the need for me. I have learned to check my patriarchy at the door and live being a feminist. I will help raise our two girls to know their power and abilities to accomplish what they desire. I will recognize the complete equality of not only the women in my life but all women.
Chapter 13 - Space
Space Racism: A powerful collection of racist policies that lead to resource inequity between racialized spaces or the elimination of certain racialized spaces, which are substantiated by racist ideas about racialized spaces.
Space Antiracism: A powerful collection of antiracist policies that lead to racial equity between integrated and protected racialized spaces, which are substantiated by antiracist ideas about racialized spaces.
To be antiracist is to recognize there is no such thing as the "real world," only real worlds, multiple worldviews.
"Resources define a space, resources the conjoined twins divvy up. People make spaces from resources. Comparing spaces across race-classes is like matching fighters of different weight classes, which fighting sports consider unfair." Pg. 172.
Use pages 173-178 to teach how the US Supreme Court has compounded racism within the US.
To be antiracist is to support the voluntary integration of bodies attracted by cultural difference, a shared humanity.
To be antiracist is to champion resource equity by challenging the racist policies that produce resource inequity.
To be antiracist is to equate and nurture difference among racial groups.
Chapter 12 - Class
Class Racist: One who is racializing the classes, supporting policies of racial capitalism against those race-classes, and justifying them by racist ideas about those race-classes.
Antiracist Anticapitalist: One who is opposing racial capitalism.
"Whoever creates the norm creates the hierarchy and positions their own race-class at the top of the hierarchy." Pg. 153.
Conjoined twins - capitalism and racism - were born together with the transatlantic slave trade of African people.
"In the twenty-first century, persisting racial inequities in poverty, unemployment, and wealth show the lifework of the conjoined twins." Pg. 157.
The history of capitalism --of world warring, classing, slave trading, enslaving, colonizing, depressing wages, and dispossessing land and labor and resources and rights--bears out the conservative definition of capitalism." Pg. 161.
To be antiracist is to recognize neither poor Blacks nor elite Blacks as the truest representative of Black people.
To love capitalism can lead to a love racism. I will advocate to remove profit motive in areas such as education, healthcare, utilities, mass media and incarceration. I will advocate for policies that don't create hierarchy.
Chapter 11 - Black
Powerless Defense: The illusory, concealing, disempowering, and racist idea that Black people can’t be racist because Black people don’t have power.
“When you control a man’s thinking you do not have to worry about his actions. You do not have to tell him to stand here or go yonder. He wiki find his ‘proper place’ and will stay in it.” Carter G. Woodson
“The powerless defense shields people of color from charges of racism even when they are reproducing racist policies and justifying them with the same racist ideas as the White people they call racist.” Pg. 140
No matter what position I hold I will have the power to be an antiracist. No matter the position anyone holds, they will have the power to promote antiracist ideas and policies.
Before reading this chapter and learning how to be an antiracist, I was promoting the racist idea of the powerless effect. Now, I understand how this has been used to mask the racism of those who in their positions promoted racist ideas and policies. Carter Woodson’s quote supports the idea that Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian and Middle Eastern people could hold and express racist ideas. I have learned that history is not a conflict between White and Black but between racists and antiracists.
Chapter 3 - Power
Race: A power construct of collected or merged differences that lives socially.
"Race making is an essential ingredient in the making of racist ideas, the crust that holds the pie." pg. 40 - Kendi
"This cause and effect -- a racist power creates racist policies out of raw self-interest; the racist policies necessitate racist ideas to justify them --lingers over the life of racism." pg. 42 - Kendi
Race was constructed to set up a social hierarchy that would "justify" the actions of those who were profiting off the inhumane practices. The set up an economic, political and social systems that would direct the attention away from the policies and towards the people continued the inequities. As I apply this learning to my understanding of how these systems still persist and operate and how I am a beneficiary is how I can find my role in promoting antiracist policies and fight racism.
Chapter 2 - Dueling Consciousness
Assimilationist: One who is expressing the racist idea that a racial group is culturally or behaviorally inferior and is supporting cultural or behavioral enrichment programs to develop that racial group.
Segregationist: One who is expressing the racist idea that permanently inferior racial group can never be developed and is supporting policy that segregates away that racial group.
Antiracist: One who is expressing the idea that racial groups are equals and none needs developing, and is supporting policy that reduces racial inequity.
"One ever feels his two-ness, an American, a Negro; two souls, two thoughts, two unreconciled strivings; two warring ideals in one dark body, whose dogged strength alone keeps it from being torn asunder." W.E.B. Du Bois
"Antiracist ideas are based in the truth that racial groups are equals in all the ways they are different, assimilationist ideas are rooted in the notion that certain racial groups are culturally or behaviorally inferior, and segregationist ideas spring from a belief in genetic racial distinction and fixed hierarchy." pg. 31.
In my position as an educator, do I support specific programs for different racial groups. Do I, unintentionally, hold segregationist and assimilationist attitudes because of the educational programs I am involved with? What local/state/federal policies do I need to better understand so that I know what impact it has had and will have in my community?
My life would be an example of privilege in this country. White, 30s, Christian, able-bodied, college education, cisgender, straight, middle-upper middle class, employed, home-owner. I need to understand and check my positions on policies and how they will impact the people in my community.
Chapter 1 - Definitions
Racist: One who is supporting racist policy through their actions or inaction or expressing a racist idea.
Antiracist: One who is supporting an antiracist policy through their actions or expressing an antiracist idea.
Racial inequality is when two or more groups are not standing on equal footing.
Racial equity is when two or more groups are standing on relatively equal footing.
Racist policy is any measure that produces or sustains racial inequity between racial groups.
Antiracist policy is any measure that produces and sustains racial equity between racial groups.
Racist idea is any idea that suggests one racial group is inferior or superior to another racial group in any way.
Antiracist idea is any idea that suggests the racial groups are equals in all their apparent differences -- there is nothing right or wrong with any racial group.
Antiracism is a powerful collection of antiracist policies that lead to racial equity and are substantiated by antiracist ideas.
"We can unknowingly strive to be a racist. We can knowingly strive to be an antiracist. Like fighting an addition, being an antiracist requires persistent self-awareness, constant self-criticism, and regular self-examination." - Ibram X. Kendi
What educational policies do I support? Who benefits and who loses from my decisions in the classroom? What political policies do I support? Do these policies only positively affect people who look like me or all people? What ideas do I have about the people who I come in contact with? About my students? Do my actions demonstrate antiracist ideas?
Persistent. Constant. Regular. My learning will never be complete. This is my responsibility. I need to check myself. I need to listen.
Mr. Dylan Wince