Color blindness is an interesting concept. Years ago, it was considered PC to be colorblind. It was polite to not notice the race of another person.
Because this is seen as judgement.
But being colorblind is actually more hurtful than not. When you pretend to not see race, you are really saying that the person who is different is just like you. It’s like being “gender” blind. In the workforce, men will pretend that their female counterpart’s voice and strength does not bother them.
But deep down…it does.
It bothers them because women were never meant to be equal-though they should be. In their mind, equality makes them somehow feel like they are being oppressed.
Just like with the gender blindness issue, colorblindness erases the reality of the person who is a minority. Color blindness does not just mean you don’t see the skin tone, it means you don’t recognize their race, culture, heritage, or the way they do things.
Unless you are at a party!
White people LOVE to go to mixed race parties. They love to go to parties that are diverse because they get to take as opposed to give. White people rarely give of their time, their money, or their ideas…..mainly because it never originated from them. They have received money, time and ideas from other cultures. They have appropriated most of their entire existence.
But at a party…..they become the center. Those who are not white, look at the one, two or three white people there and have a chance to laugh. The white people think they are laughing with them, but instead, they are most likely laughing at them. Io
At a party where white people all of a sudden “see color”, they express this with phrases like:
OMG that music is so hip hop.
I love the exotic food.
You look so great in that wrap.
The takitos are delicious!
The music is banging!
At a party, white people see color. They see color so much and they become engaged in the culture, they attempt to speak the language, they LOVE the food, and they often try and become part of the heritage.
White people rarely feel “out of place” unless it is at night on Division and Monroe. They always lock their doors.
But at a party, they are all in. They want to try the new food, dance to the “different” music, play the exciting game, and try out the new language. They are all in.
The minute people of color begin to talk about oppression, cops, racism, politics, money…the breaks are turned on.
White people don’t want to hear about that. They immediately become colorblind-once again.
Color blindness is they weapon of mass destruction. They don’t understand that as soon as we speak our truth, we are not looking for someone to say “well, I see you as equal”…we are looking for acknowledgment of what we have gone through and then forward motion on how this pain is going to stop.
Colorblindness is like the safety pin. And the pussy hats.
White people want people of color to think that they are a “safe space” but only when their status is being challenged.
White people don’t really want equality because that gives them the feeling that they have to give up something.
At a party though, white people want to feel equal to the “happening”, they want to fit into a culture they will never understand. They want to be “cool” and “exotic”.
And in their minds…they are.
Because colorblind to them means they too are oppressed.