Why "Dear White People" Is Obviously Racist

Why "Dear White People" Is Obviously Racist

"Dear White People" is only fueling racial tensions.
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Man, if there's anyone who loves to hate-watch a good ole cringe-worthy, facepalm-inducing television show, it is definitely me. When I first found out about Dear White People, my boyfriend was telling me that it was a huge hit among all the social justice warriors that use Netflix. As soon as I heard that, I knew I needed to see what this was all about. I imagined a whole series based off of the hardcore liberal notion that all white people have contributed to every ounce of racism that has ever existed in society. Cue the eye roll.

Along with that, some people of color believe they have a free pass to be as racist as they'd like because “you can't be racist to white people.” The reasoning for this is usually the same. “Well, white people owned slaves and have been the MOST racist back in the day, so I can say whatever I want with no repercussions.” Well, it doesn't work like that, and I'm going to explain why.

First of all, have any of you actually googled the definition of racism? It states “prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior.” Now, I'm pretty sure there was no mention in there of white people being excluded from this definition. After all, white is a race, isn't it?

Anyone can be racist to any race. I've even had someone argue with me that “the dictionary was written by a white male, so we CAN'T listen to it!” This isn't a situation where we can cherry pick what is fact and what is fiction. You can't choose not to believe in a dictionary definition because tumblr tells you to.

With all that out of the way, I can move on to talking about the show itself. The first episode starts off with the ever so scandalous black face party. I think we can all agree that the concept of black face for mockery intentions is obviously offensive. However, I find it extremely contradictory how character Sam herself anonymously instigates the party as a social experiment, and when people actually show up she gets offended. By doing that, she's pretty much making her bed and lying in it. I get that she was trying to see if people would really show up to prove some type of point, but clearly it only resulted in an issue that easily could've been avoided.

Yet another contradictory statement Sam made was when she said, “Look, I didn't create the divide, I'm just calling attention to it.” But...did she not just light the match for the fire two seconds ago? Making a podcast called “Dear White People” that attempts to speak for ALL white people in such a derogatory way isn't adding to a racial divide?

You see, that's a prime example of the entire issue with this series. This show wants to complain about a racial divide, all while intensifying said racial divide. This can be seen in real life, as well. Sam says “I get it, the realization that you contribute to a racial society can be unsettling,” as if she is not contributing to a racist society herself. As this is a reflection of the way I have actually seen some people act, it truly baffles me that such ignorance can be displayed.

Let's fast-forward to when everyone is sitting down for the “Defamation Wednesday” event in the all-black Armstrong Parker house, where Sam brought Gabe along. As soon as Gabe strikes up a conversation with Reggie, he's met with immediate discrimination. In this scene, Gabe seemed like he was trying to be as humble, reserved, and understanding as possible in regards to recognizing that he was the only white guy in the room.

Gabe didn't want to cause any arguments or problems. Although that didn't matter, because Reggie gave him a hard time after asking if they were bothered by the black face party, to which Gabe responded with “I have no idea how you feel, but I want to.” Reggie was not having any of that, though, and seemed to already have a grudge against Gabe, pretty much just over the fact that he was white. The characters in this show seem to take offense and feel oppressed over simply having a white person in the same room as them, apparently.

But honestly, if you aren't even open to the idea of calmly coexisting with other races, how can you call yourself a good person? How can you consider yourself not to be a racist?

The double standards in these scenarios are very real as well. The black people in the show are under the impression that they have a lot of room to express their racist ideologies against every white person on campus, as if every white person is a racist. Meanwhile, if any of the white people were to express how they're fed up with being discriminated against, you know damn well that all hell would break loose.

The worst part of all is that these examples hold true to the real world, as what I just described has been observed in reality. If only certain people would open their eyes and realize that the more we call out white people just for being born white, and the more we pull the race card where it doesn't need to be pulled, the more we go in the opposite direction of advocating for racial equality and allowing all these racial issues to simmer down. To me, I find this concept to be real “common sense,” but maybe it's not. Or, maybe, common sense isn't so common anymore.

Anyway, as much as I'm going to roll my eyes until they fall out of my head over how absolutely embarrassing this series is, I'm going to continue to watch it just to observe how shameful it is, as I do with many shows. If you read my article with an open mind, perhaps you thought outside the box when it came to questioning the way today's society wants you to think.

Racial issues are not limited only to black people. If racism is something you really want to aim to get rid of, you're going to have to look at all sides of it. It's just as unacceptable to be racist to a white person as it is to be racist to a black person, and it really is just that simple.

Cover Image Credit: ImageSerenity

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

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When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

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Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

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5 Songs to Add to Your Playlist This Month

Spring into finals week (and the summer) by "cleaning up" your playlist

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Here are some fun, fresh new tracks to check out as you finish out the rest of the school year and help you get out of your "music comfort zone!"

“Patience” by Tame Impala 

Genre: Electronic/Alternative

Tame Impala FINALLY released new music (!!), and this track is absolutely stunning. With frontrunner Kevin Parker staying on brand with the band's psychedelic, seemingly ethereal style, it sounds like a combination of 70s soft rock and waves of modern-day electronica, with Parker's voice drifting in and out in a kind of otherworldly, mellowed-out manner.

“Harmony Hall” by Vampire Weekend 

Genre: Alternative/Indie Pop

Vampire Weekend is also releasing an album, entitled "Father of the Bride", on May 3rd. From the looks of it, this track relates to the theme of marriage/weddings present in the album's title, and it is a fun, upbeat song that I have been listening to a lot in the morning as I'm getting ready for class! Ezra Koenig's voice is so unique and can cover a broad range, and I highly recommend listening to some of the band's other work as well ("Step" from their 2013 release "Modern Vampires of the City" is one of my all-time favorite songs!).

“Ready to Let Go” by Cage the Elephant 

Genre: Alternative/Alternative Rock

So many great artists are (finally) releasing new albums this year, and Cage the Elephant falls into this category. This track is an absolute banger and doesn't stray much from the band's style in that it includes a lot of loud guitar and dynamic vocals. Like Vampire Weekend, Cage the Elephant has been around since the early 2000s, and I highly recommend checking out some of their earlier work as well (big fan of their most recent album, actually!)

“Apple Orchard” by Beach House 

Genre: Indie/Electronic

Beach House is one of my favorite bands of all time, as I find a kind of an ethereal, beautiful sadness in the dreamy style of instrumentalist Alex Scally and lucid vocals of singer Victoria Legrand. This track is from their 2006 self-titled debut and is probably one of my favorite songs they've ever released. The lyrics are poetic and perfect for the post-finals enjoyment of spring weather, in that they preach relaxation and restfulness, and the song's electronic rhythms echo the essence of spring as well. If you like this song, then I highly recommend checking out the band's other albums as well (Depression Cherry is one of my favorite albums of all time).

“April Come She Will” by Simon & Garfunkel 

Genre: 60s Pop

No spring playlist is complete without a little Simon & Garfunkel! This song is a classic, its timeless, poetic lyrics capturing the epitome of the coming of spring and all its glory. In fact, I consider the entire album (entitled Sound of Silence) to be perfect for the pleasantness and feelings of renewal/natural revitalization associated with the coming months, so be sure to give it a listen if you haven't heard it before!

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