If POC supposedly have a “race card” they play to “invent” issues about race, then I’d like to officially introduce the white privilege coin. It has two sides and, for many white folks, it’s used to buy their way out of arguments about racism and white supremacy.
Here’s how the two sides work:
*One side is used to dismiss what POC say about their experiences with racism on the basis of white folks never having this experience themselves. We don’t find any evidence in our own lives of racism (because we don’t experience it), so POC must be making shit up. This is the privileged attitude that nothing matters until it happens to us. Most of us don’t give a flying fuck about racism until we think it happens in “reverse,” which leads us to believe we are victims of racism when we’re actually dealing with prejudice.
*The other side is used to dismiss what white anti-racists say on the basis of these whites “hating” themselves. Calling white anti-racism “self-hate” derails the larger discussion/perspective of systemic hatred against POC, outsources hatred to individuals, and completely misses the point. If white folks can accuse white anti-racists of being self-hating (and therefore full of shit), then this buys them total immunity from any criticism, self-reflection, and responsibility. Effectively, this coin allows whites to never listen to anyone.
Race isn’t a card in a deck conveniently “played” to offend white sensibilities. Unlike the white privilege coin that rests in many of our pockets to pay our ass-saving toll, race and racism are social constants that are present everywhere and in all things. Zionists can dismiss Jewish folks who are critical of “Israel” as “self-hating Jews” and thereby shift the focus from genocide, ethnic cleansing, and colonial occupation of Palestinians to a bunch of crazy religion traitors. White supremacists and nationalists can call white anti-racists “self-hating whites” and thereby shift the focus of racial oppression in the US to a bunch of crazy race traitors. But race, racism, and white supremacy exist whether POC talk about it or not. There is no card, there is no deck, but there is a white privilege coin.