Monday, February 5, 2018

Recommended Reading

This month is Black History Month and next month is Women's History Month. But there's some history we white women really need to keep in mind.

How the 'Grassroots Resistance' of White Women Shaped White Supremacy

This is the story of grassroots resistance to racial equality undertaken by white women. They are the center of the history of white supremacist politics in the South and nation. While they toiled outside the attention of the national media (for the most part), white women took central roles in disciplining their communities according to Jim Crow’s rules and were central to massive resistance to racial equality. White segregationist women capitalized on their roles in social welfare institutions, public education, partisan politics, and popular culture to shape the Jim Crow order. From there they provided a political education that mobilized generations and trained activists for white supremacist politics. These women guaranteed that racial segregation seeped into the nooks and crannies of public life and private matters, of congressional campaigns and PTA meetings, of cotton policy and household economies, and of textbook debates and daycare decisions. Their work shored up white supremacist politics and shaped the segregated state. White women were the mass in massive resistance.

This is just a list of some of the shit white women did to prop up and maintain white supremacy, segregation, and Jim Crow laws. Full reading should be required for white women.

I still see way too many instances of white women acting like they're immune to being racist because they're not men. We might understand being oppressed, but that doesn't mean we understand what it's like to be black. And with our specific history of using our white womanhood as a weapon against black people and other people of color, we need to tread lightly. We need to be aware. And we need to work to dismantle systems that keep black kids out of our nice schools. School segregation is making a comeback and that shit needs to stop. Let's go.

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