Wednesday, September 21, 2016
Where I live, there's a mammoth elephant in the room that nobody ever seems to acknowledge openly. I see it surface daily, and I find myself wondering if this quiet obsession is equally common in other parts of the world... or something uniquely American. This elephant is color-consciousness – particularly black and white. Overly-conscious, to the point of being crazed. I'm not referring to people here, but rather the actual colors themselves.
I've noticed people reacting very peculiarly when these colors are talked about. As a result of all the racial conditioning that has taken place over hundreds of years, in today's so-called color-blind society, many Americans have gone color crazy. Its not uncommon for someone to personally identify with a certain color; subconsciously, the concept of “race” is in the driver's seat. It's one thing to have a favorite color... its another to treat another person differently based on it. (ex: wearing black doesn't make one “militant” anymore than wearing white makes one “pure”.)
These days, I do my best to not classify people as “black”, or “white”. I don't mean to offend anyone, but to be candid, it seems absurd to continue to do so. The fact is, virtually no “black” people are black, and virtually zero “white” people are white. (Perhaps then this is a color-blind country; in the literal sense.) Is the simple truth so unpleasant? Why not just call folks what they are – culturally, ethnically, and/or geographically?
Also: as culturally, black has become lazily associated with all that is dark and bad, and white has been likened to what is light and good, whenever we view other members of society from this perspective, we are perpetuating a manufactured thought construct that ultimately does reality a disservice. Besides, who ever says “red man” or “yellow man” anymore? Are not black & white equally archaic?