A 'Whitesplaining' Email From Bruce

On Oct 27, 2017, at 9:38 PM, bruce.scheer@gmail.com wrote:
Dear Professor:
The last president bombed the shit out of people of color for 8 years.  I think it is not white, black but predatory policies not aligned whatsoever with the melena content present in skin.  Divisive  rhetoric will actually cause more divisiveness. But you know this, you are a PHD so this must be your intent.  
Sincerely, 
Bruce Scheer
Haiku, Hi
Sent from Mail for Windows 10

Bruce,

First, there are always multiple issues and systems of power at work. To your point, the United States is an imperialist super power responsible for violent actions and authoritarian regimes around the globe. This agenda has been progressively advanced regardless the race of the president – even if there only 1 of 45 of was a person of color – on that we can certainly agree. Nevertheless, the U.S. is also a nation built by Africans, my ancestors who were violently enslaved and rendered as property by Europeans, on land stolen through genocide of indigenous and native peoples. This nation has always been both racist and imperialist, and therefor it is not a debate of either/or debate but one of both/and. 

Secondly, the correct word is “melanin.” Melena refers to the presence of blood in urine or feces resulting from internal hemorrhaging.

Thirdly, racism as a systemic and structural form of power, as well as interpersonal racist interactions, is what is divisive and perpetuates division. What is not divisive, although drawing attention to divisions created by white supremacist worldviews, is the rhetoric of those committed to its eradication, if only so that people of color might live their lives with the same access to opportunities and life outcomes as their white peers.

And finally, yes, I am a professor with a Doctor of Philosophy degree and more than a decade of experience researching and teaching about race. I have also been a Black person my entire life and thus have experienced racism in various forms for decades. I suggest you worry less about misunderstanding or misrepresenting my intent and focus on my impact. Because I, as a person who believes in complete freedom for my people, will not rest until it comes.

Peace,

 

/hf