My Response to Question about “White Pride”

From Quora:

Why are Black pride, gay pride and Asian pride all viewed positively but white pride is viewed negatively?

Because “White pride” is shorthand for white supremacism, whereas “Black pride” is not shorthand for black supremacism (and Gay pride doesn’t mean gay supremacism, etc.). When members of historically abused groups work together for mutual empowerment against oppression, they conventionally make references to “taking pride” in their group and name their efforts “(insert name of historically oppressed group) pride.” White supremacists have attempted to steal the “pride” label to claim equivalency to the other groups in a bid toward gaining public legitimacy, but the equivalency is false and the claim is dishonest, given that the animating purpose of white supremacists is to suppress, separate from, ban, kill, deport, etc., groups they regard as inferior to themselves. This is not true of other “pride” groups. White supremacists have similarly attempted to adopt the term “white genocide” to construct a phony equivalence with Jewish people, and “White Lives Matter” to undermine the credibility of the Black Lives Matter movement. These linguistic manipulations are particularly insidious because they appear superficially to have some merit to those easily manipulated or lacking in media literacy or critical thinking skills.

It is unfortunate that you feel troubled by not being able to take pride in your “ethnic heritage,” but this is perhaps a small price to pay given that your skin color offers you, and has offered your ancestors, many benefits that members of other races don’t have or have had to fight hard to obtain.

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11 thoughts on “My Response to Question about “White Pride”

  1. I agree with Jak. I used to joke around with my white ex wife that when we had kids I would have a white pride day. She didn’t think it was funny but I laughed until I peed a little.

    It’s because “white pride” is synonymous with the little mustache and all of them that try to emulate his behavior since WWII.

    There’s also the thing where Caucasians have been in positions of power historically, and even still to this day. From many perspectives, there really is no need to celebrate the accomplishments of white pride due to that fact.

    Yet another way to view it would be that because there are pride days for other varieties of people aside from heterosexual white people, those people associated with various pride days are purposefully cast into a different category, as opposed to just being a part of a whole; as opposed to just being a person.

    So, in that regards, I’m of the opinion that all these “special” days we as a society must celebrate and recognize are extremely detrimental and serve to divide us even further.

    I’m also of the opinion that the more we talk about how different we are (and are sincere in that we are different) the more it becomes so.

    Pedantic, yes, however this doesn’t fully cover my whole explanation.
    -Joey

    Liked by 3 people

    • I’m going to quote the late Terry Pratchett here: “Before you can kill the monster you have to say its name.”

      In this case, the various “pride” movements and “special” days serve not to divide. Rather they serve to acknowledge that these various groups have been subject to racism, sexism, and other forms of bigotry. To not acknowledge that, to not say the names (e.g. racism, etc.) is to sweep the problem under the proverbial rug.

      As a culture, we didn’t discuss racism or celebrate various racial groups and their contributions to our society for over 200 years. Did racism die out in that span? No, it simply got stronger because no one named it or spoke about it.

      The same goes for sexism.

      The point of the “pride” groups and “special” days is not to divide (and they don’t), but rather to celebrate the differences, the varied cultural traditions, the diversity, and the immigrant backgrounds that make this society and culture special and constantly evolving. And to acknowledge that, as a society, we’ve screwed up (lots, and still are) and we need to own that and work on getting better.

      We have a tendency to make quiet little b.s. gestures, then pretend the band-aid fixed everything and we can therefore ignore systemic issues rather than doing the hard work of fixing our society at its core. The “pride” movements and “special” days are reminders that the systemic issues remain and, while we’ve come far in some respects, we still have a ways to go.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Again, that is one way to view it. Quite another, more cynical manner in which to view it (and dare I say, more realistic?) would be that these “special” days have devolved into just another day in the calendar, akin to October or even Memorial Day.

        Setting aside a special day should, in theory, be exactly what you state it’s to be: a solemn moment of silence, stopping your life and clearing your thoughts so that we as a society can truly recognize the history and culture of whomever these targeted days would be allocated towards.

        Surprise, it’s not.

        I state this as a matter of fact, not of conjecture. Need proof? What has Memorial Day evolved into? 9/11? Labor Day? Martin Luther King Jr. Day?

        That’s right, a day off. A day that we Americans can break out the barbecue and have family over and bitch about traffic.

        These days are a pandering joke. A way for all of us to feel like we’re doing something because we’re really not.

        The more we recognize that we are different, then proclaim that that individual is special because they’re whatever the day is only furthers to deepen those differences.

        Wanna know why the 4th of July is so popular? Aside from fireworks, that is? Because every American, regardless of what religious affinity, gender, sexual orientation, or anything else happens to make us different, we’re all united in the celebration of something that lumps us together; something that makes it “us” and not “some people.”

        So please, don’t come at me with the white guilt society or you have imposed upon yourself. I’m not buying it.

        Like

      • 1) Who said anything about “white guilt”? No one but you. So, you’ve set up a straw man fallacy.

        2) As an attendee at various “pride” and “special” day events . . . your assessment is grossly incorrect. Every such event has been a celebration of culture, diversity, and contribution.

        3) Please, please do not make the mistake of thinking that your personal anger and offense is “cynicism” or “realistic” compared to others.

        4) Most of these days are not days off. Most of them, in fact, fall on weekends (in the U.S. at least). So, that theory falls flat.

        If you’re offended by celebrating the cultures, achievements, and contributions of non-white, non-Europeans . . . well, that says more about you than it does about the days & groups themselves.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’ve never felt anything like “white guilt,” yet somehow I’m still able to acknowledge past and present disparities and do my small part to rectify them for a better future. Go figure.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Also, we can be united and still celebrate the differences. These are not mutually exclusive.

        To take Anna Quindlen’s approach, the melting pot is a terrible metaphor, American society is more a patchwork quilt.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I’ve never felt “pride” groups or holidays commemorating the contributions of minority groups were divisive at all. What’s divisive is saying such groups shouldn’t work to empower their communities despite contending with the effects of historical bigotry against them.

    Liked by 1 person

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