White Fragility, Robin DiAngelo
As white people, we are often more concerned with the fear of being labeled a racist than we are the actual damaged caused by subtle, structural and societal racism.
Some criticism I’ve heard since sharing this book calls out the whiteness of the author, furthering the underlying issue that white people are quick to remove themselves from issues of racism, leaving the onus of racism on POC. If we ever want to move our society forward, we, as white people, need to own, address and acknowledge our racism and unwillingness to talk about it. If we as white people cannot own our role in the issue of race, we will never make progress or see the underlying racism in our words, actions and beliefs. White people own racism and it is our responsibility to recognize and address it.
White Fragility challenged me in a positive way, opening my eyes to my own racism. The clarification between how we see racism (white supremacy, KKK, etc.) and what is actually racism (white flight, economic and education inequities, good vs. bad neighborhoods). As a white progressive, I’ve often fallen into many of the traps of white fragility without realizing it. I may never be perfect, but with this knowledge, I can do better and continue educating myself and challenging both white fragility and racism.
Robin DiAngelo expertly navigated the negative impacts of white fragility. I came into this book with an open mind, ready and willing to accept the information presented. Prior to starting it, I made a vow to let down my defenses and actually listen, absorb and accept the information. This is the only way to approach this book – to remove your own white fragility and be willing to hear the truth.