It’s only been a week, but I swear, the longer it goes on, the more enraged I am that people did this to us. Not just that, but then they’re all hurt that we won’t just make them feel okay about it, that we won’t “let” things get back to normal. They want to have done this shitty thing and have it mean nothing.
And you know, why shouldn’t they get their way? What in American history tells them they won’t? I’ve been thinking how often white people do some dumb evil thing that other white people disagree with and know is evil, but the second group of white people run around American history trying to make the first group understandable and to help us all relate to them and come together with them. Brother against brother, so let’s have a family reunion and keep the power of the country in our family’s hands.
Bah, I’m not being clear. Basically, though, it’s this–we propagate national myths of white tragedy so that white people, even when we have internal disagreements, will try to find ways to be kind to each other, which, since part of the people doing the disagreeing are unabashed white supremacists, means that “good” white people are constantly arguing for kindness toward and understanding of utter shitbirds, on the mistaken belief that this is what makes us “good” people. And all that reinforces white supremacy.
This is obviously familiar to anyone who’s been in an abusive situation. (And I’d argue that you can see Trump’s actions this weekend as the ‘isolating from friends and family’ stage.) Everyone feel sorry for the abuser who just can’t help but be a jackass. Maybe if we’re all kinder to him or her, he or she will see that niceness is awesome and take up the habit.
But it doesn’t work. And it’s cruel to the asshole’s victims.