Woman Refuses to Have Children for Fear They Will Be White
THE HUFFPO has the touching story about a woman named Ali Michael, burdened with being White, who refuses to have children out of fear that they too will be white.
Being White… can drive you to do the weird and unthinkable
This is so true! Just ask any white person!
There was a time in my 20s when everything I learned about the history of racism made me hate myself, my Whiteness, my ancestors…and my descendants. I remember deciding that I couldn’t have biological children because I didn’t want to propagate my privilege biologically.
This is an increasingly common issue in our race-conscious society. How can white people procreate without having white children? It’s a big problem! I would ask all my caucasian readers: how do you deal with this problem?
If I was going to pass on my privilege, I wanted to pass it on to someone who doesn’t have racial privilege; so I planned to adopt. I disliked my Whiteness, but I disliked the Whiteness of other White people more. I felt like the way to really end racism was to feel guilty for it, and to make other White people feel guilty for it too.
Don’t you feel good when your read about people like Ali Michael? She not only feels guilty, and appropriately so, but she wants to help other white people feel guilty too. All you white people reading this: when is the last time you felt guilty for being white? If you don’t remember, don’t you feel guilty for not remembering the last time you felt guilty? Don’t you feel grateful for people like Michael who help you with your racial duty to feel self-loathing?
And then, like Dolezal, I wanted to take on Africanness. Living in South Africa during my junior year abroad, I lived with a Black family, wore my hair in head wraps, shaved my head.
I have a lot of questions about this:
1) Michael shaved her head? That makes no sense. Shouldn’t she have grown it long like Rachel Dolezal, braided it, and coiled it on top of her head like a snake?
2) Why is a “head wrap” Black? What is a head wrap? Is that like a tuna wrap, like a tortilla you wrap around your head?
3) And why did Michael have to go to South Africa to live with Blacks? Couldn’t she have accomplished the same thing with less effort by getting herself adopted by a family in Harlem, or Newark or Oakland?
…the Black authors I read saw the immersion stage coming, and they reminded me that Black people don’t need White people to help them pursue liberation, that the job of White people lies with teaching other White people, seeing ourselves clearly, owning our role in oppression.
So now that Michael has owned her role as an oppressor, she wants to oppress other whites, so they will understand that they are oppressors too! How brilliant!
In case you’re wondering, the author of this piece is an accomplished scholar at the University of Pennsylvania.
Ali Michael, Ph.D., is the Director of P-12 Consulting and Professional Development at the Center for the Study of Race Equity in Education at the University of Pennsylvania.
Can you think of any better person than Ali Michael to consult with schools about the best way to teach racial consciousness to children? Can you think of anything more morally symmetrical than an oppressor of the oppressor class oppressing other unknowing oppressors until they too are oppressed?
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