1. Why did I use myself as an example? Because you said that *all* whites are racist, so all I have to do to disprove your claim is to show even one that’s not…and if you can think of a better example of a white man earnestly striving to overcome racism than the example I’ve set, I’d like to hear it.
  2. That being said, you didn’t answer my questions. Given what I’ve done, where I’ve had my children live, the decisions I’ve made, especially with the foreknowledge that there will be little or no white blood in my descendants following my grandchildren, exactly how can anyone call me a racist? Given the same opportunities I had, could you have done the same, knowing that your own descendants following your grandchildren would be of a completely different race from your own?
  3. Your argument is full of assumptions. You rightly assume that you know more about black history than I do - I’d never argue otherwise. But by the same token, you appear to be making the assumption that no one has it nearly as bad as American blacks do today…and that would be an erroneous assumption. There are many in this world today who have it much worse. You can pile up every injustice and evil committed against minorities in America today…and you still wouldn’t come close to those who really have it bad. You might not think that matters, but it does, very much so. Go look at the homeless in the streets. You see them, perhaps know a few, and perhaps you’ve been homeless - I’ve no way of knowing. But ask yourself, what are the demographics of the homeless? More specifically, what percentage of the homeless are immigrants? There’s a lot of homeless over in Seattle, about half white, half black, the very occasional Asian…but if you know the immigrant community as I do (I used to work at Immigration, among other things), it’s easy to see at a glance that those homeless are almost never immigrants. The taxi drivers are almost all from eastern Africa, from Somalia or Ethiopia or Sudan or South Sudan…and you never see them on the streets, just like you almost never see Asians on the street (or if you do, he or she is not an immigrant but was raised in America).
  4. But there’s an even greater reason why I’m trying to give you such perspective: gratitude. Those same immigrants have it hard, yes…but the great majority of them will tell you that they’d still rather be here than where they came from. In other words, they are grateful for the opportunity they have been given by coming here. In my last reply to you, I linked to an article I wrote wherein I pointed out that in Manila, as hard as their lives certainly are, even the homeless are generally happier than most Americans, and that the reason for this is gratitude, thankfulness in almost everything. One cannot have real happiness without gratitude…and a person who is convinced that he or she has nothing to be grateful for will never know real happiness (which, btw, is why Trump is such a miserable wretch. He doesn’t know how to be sincerely grateful for anything, so he can never know happiness. That’s why you have never, ever heard him give a sincere laugh about anything. Ever.).
  5. What’s more, when I see those immigrants busting their butts to make a living for themselves and their families, I am humbled. They are better people than I am. They’ve lived much harder lives than I have (and in many cases harder than you have), and I see how hard they continue to strive…whereas I’ve had it relatively easy (i.e. white privilege). The very least I can do is acknowledge and sincerely respect how far they’ve come and how hard they continue to strive, almost always to support their families back home. That’s why for many years I’ve believed they are generally better people than I am.
  6. Concerning the murders of black men by police, yes, we have to protest, we have to change laws, we have to get people elected to make a difference, and we have to hold police officers accountable and put them in jail when they commit such murders. It is racism, pure and simple, endemic in most law enforcement agencies nationwide, and it’s much worse than in any other first-world nation. But don’t for one minute fool yourself into thinking that nobody else has it this bad. Far from it. When it comes to police corruption, if all you’ve seen of police is in America, then most third-world immigrants (including most of my family) have seen a lot more police corruption than you have.
  7. There’s an old saying: “familiarity breeds contempt”, meaning that the more you know of a place, thing, or whatever, the less special it is to you. If you’ve got a teenager in your home, chances are he or she doesn ’t think you’re as special as he or she did a decade earlier. Why? Because familiarity breeds contempt. A kid growing up in a freaking mansion won’t think it’s anything special after a few years. Point is, you see what’s going on in America and you’re rightly outraged…but if you haven’t spent much time outside of America, then it’s impossible for you to have real perspective on where American society and law enforcement are worse than some places…and much better than others.
  8. Keep doing what you are doing. Fight for what is good and right, always! But whenever you’re getting frustrated at how far that mountaintop is from you, take a look back sometimes and consider how far you’ve really come, and let that give you the strength and courage to keep fighting.

Written by

Retired Navy. Inveterate contrarian. If I haven’t done it, I’ve usually done something close.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store