Sometimes I get really frustrated about racism.
First of all there's the fact that it abounds around me, and whenever I try to explain why I feel something's racist, or why I feel reverse-racism doesn't exist, I'm met with opposition and ridicule from the people around me. And I like my family and don't think they're bad or racist, in fact they are actually good at pointing out racist jokes and such. But some of my more radical beliefs (they don't seem so radical to me!) they make fun of.
Then there's talking with people who have actually experienced racism. I have been told by people of color that reverse racism DOES exist, that the term "people of color" is offensive (when I've heard it's the word to use) and basically that my ideas are wrong. That racism is not power plus prejudice. It leaves me very confused, being white, because it's true that I'll never understand what racism is all about, being white in a white country. I've been told that even acknowledging racism still exists is putting white people up on a pedastal, by a non-white person. I don't even know how to define it anymore! I don't want to say person of color anymore in case it's offensive.
I guess I'm just really frustrated. I really want to change things, but I don't know what to do or where my place is in the anti-racism fight. The LAST thing I want to do is make anything worse, I am ALWAYS open to hearing viewpoints besides my own and sharing my own viewpoint. But sometimes I think maybe it would just be better if I shut up and sat down. I know that sounds harsh. When sharing m views with anyone I try to listen more than I talk, but every time it seems like I hear a different take on the matter.
I guess I am just frustrated, not understanding what I can do. In reality, when I think about it, it seems like there isn't anything I can do without offending somebody. This doesn't bother me when it's white people, because I know originally coming here I was offended and it really shook up my world view and motivated me to learn more and think more about racism, which is something I neglected never having had to deal with it. But it does bother me when my stance offends people of color, specifically when I'm told things like I don't understand, have no right to have on opinion. Maybe because I really do feel they may be right.
Can anyone else relate?