I subscribe to an industry publication called Diversity, Inc., and have sat on several diversity discussion panels with the publisher, Luke Visconti. Think ofDiversity, Inc., as a sort of “Tim Wise” in publication. Well worth the read.

What caught my eye in particular is a column ran in the magazine called “Ask the White Guy” – which is usually a column that addresses readers’ concerns about what is correct to say, how to address minorities and engage in discussion on touchy subjects, etc. His current issue pretty much put a smack down on another white person asking why can’t people of color “get over” race.

First, the letter from the lady who’s fed up with being sensitive to the people of color she works with. I’ll post an excerpt, but I encourage you to read the piece.

I am a white female and I can tell you that I don’t talk about blacks for fear I will be called a racist or be called to the table, especially in the workplace, for discrimination. We (whites), at my company, are not allowed to talk about blacks or any other ethnic group because we would get fired. I will say that whites are very sensitive now because we are discriminated against. Blacks can have the NAACP, BET (Black Entertainment Television), Black History Month, United Negro College Fund, etc. If white people were to start something like the before mentioned there would be a huge uproar.

Sounds like girlfriend really wants to get her “Ferraro” on and she can’t do it at work because she will be sacked. That’s how it is in most workplaces these days, whether they want to be or not. The workplace wants a discrimination lawsuit by an employee because a loose-lipped bigoted employee can’t hold her tongue even less.

I’ve already said what I’m going to about the NAACP and BET – like they’re supposed to be where we can go to affirm our “Blackness”. You and I know that our “Blackness” is being less than affirmed while the worst of stereotypes get facilitated by Bobcat Bob Johnson and his rump-shaking videos…or the silence of NAACP leadership on the things that matter to the communities of color.

Here’s what the White Guy had to say in response:

As a member of the baby boomer generation, I found your e-mail to be a real blast from the past: Your one e-mail covered most of the race-based malarkey I heard growing up. Questioning this dogma may lead you to a better place – it did for me.

Given your current state, I would most strongly recommend you avoid racial discussions at work. This is good advice for most people. Your e-mail gives ample reason why many people will say something worthy of being fired. I don’t think you intended it to be offensive, but I’m afraid much of your e-mail is.

I’ll start with comment about the NAACP, UNCF, etc. Black people founded these organizations to counter discrimination directed against them by white people. Keep in mind that the discrimination people faced today is NOTHING like the discrimination that existed when these organizations were founded. In our recent past, “discrimination” included thousands of African Americans being lynched and lawful bigotry like segregation.

At least one person did his homework, but I think I need to correct the White Guy’s assertion that BET is a commercial enterprise that helps US out. All it really does is continue to line Bobcat Bob’s pockets at our expense.

Let me hear from JJP readers on this, but read the whole shebangabang first, okay?

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