American Pride & White Supremacy
Tonight while I was at the grocery store, I was searching for some good beef, the kind without all the trimmings that pretty much destroy the texture of beef altogether. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to find any, but I did get an earful from a store clerk who wanted to inform me on the reason why. According to him, the problem was a result of low quality products coming from Mexico.
“Look on the package,” he said, “you’ll see all that trash comes from Mexico.”
He continued on and on about how Mexicans are ruining our food and how American food is the only good food, until I couldn’t listen anymore.
“Actually, it’s American corporations who ruin our food.” I told him.
He paused and had a blank look of disbelief on his face.
“California is working to solve this problem,” I started, “but it’s our own corporations who are controlling the conditions of our food. You’d be surprised how different the food is in Mexico. In fact, Mexican communities advocate for fresher, healthier food products in the U.S. all the time.”
I went on to explain, but I could see he didn’t care. He was obviously of the mind that America was doing things just fine and apparently 3rd world nations were to blame for our food woes.
I’m sure the guy thought that he was just being a “proud American,” but I really don’t see it that way.
The whole experience just reminded me, once again, of how superior we all believe ourselves to be, as Americans…and especially as Americans who believe that white people are smarter and better than everyone else.
The funny thing is, a lot of Americans have this idea in their heads, that brown folks are always doing it wrong and that everything they produce is inferior.
Well, I’ve got news for you…that’s called white supremacy. Nobody seems to get it, but that’s exactly what it is.
The average white supremacist isn’t a guy in a white robe and pointy hat in his neighbors backyard, it’s regular white folks who refuse to buy product “made in Mexico”, who tell their kids that can play with friends of a certain color or smirk when they see a Black man driving a fancy car.
We are all affected by white supremacy to some degree, even people of color who internalize these messages and see themselves as inferior, as inherently flawed.
This is why white supremacy is so ugly. It tells white people to see white as “normal” and everything else as “exotic” or “different”…as if they are somehow strange or flawed. It programs people to look at white faces see themselves, but simultaneously makes them unrelated and distant in the presence of brown faces. It makes those who have brown faces doubt their value and wonder about how strange or flawed they might really be. It takes away our innocence and forces us to judge people based on skin color. This is white supremacy…this is the mindset that cultivates the system of oppression that we call “racism”.