I’m white. I’m not proud of that fact, nor am I ashamed by it. Why? Because I’m only proud of things I’ve achieved or fought to keep ahold of, and I’m only ashamed of things I caused. Having said that, let’s talk about the difference between having ethnic pride (e.g. Black, Latino, Asian) and white pride.
Conceptually, this is pretty straightforward and easy to grasp, so I’m not sure why more white people don’t understand, but here goes.
- People of color have had to fight for their right to retain cultural practices. Therefore, they are proud those traditions white people tried so hard to erase are intact.
- Genocide is a real thing, be it actual murder or the cultural genocide mentioned in #1. Given that fact, many groups, like Amerindians and African Americans, are proud they have overcome, to borrow a phrase from the great Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
- Ethnic pride isn’t about superiority. It’s about survival, and the passing on of cultural identity to the youth.
Finally, and this is the important part, so white folks, take heed.
- White people have never been the subjects of enslavement or ethnic cleansing. We have never been subject to losing our ethnic identities because, and let’s make this clear, we were the colonizers and slave owners, not the colonized or enslaved. Therefore, saying you are “proud to be white” is akin to being proud your lungs take in oxygen. It’s something you were born with, but not something you had to fight for.
Get over yourselves, white folks. There’s room for all of us. Someone being proud they stood tall against adversity is not a bad thing. Being proud of your superiority is. What you are living when you spout forth your “White Pride” is nothing more than the white lie of a privileged white supremacist hate monger. And dare I say, your “southern pride” is its evil cousin.