A thing that dawned on me this morning as I was walking the dog and thinking about our fucked up society, in which a white kid who bombs black people is just, so sadly, troubled and a black people who get killed weren’t “angels,” as if you have to be an angel to deserve to live, is that a really fucked up thing about racist societies is that racism becomes the tool through which the dominant culture gets positive cultural change.
Like, say, white people are supposedly perfect. We don’t do anything wrong. If we’re doing it, it can’t possibly be bad. Say we beat the shit out of our kids. And everyone is starting to notice that white children are really, really fucked up by it. But you can’t say it, because it would imply that something white parents were doing was really fucked up. And yet, obviously, good people want to stop child abuse.
Well, then, we need strong child abuse laws because those black people are so violent toward their kids. Look how they treat their kids. Where are the fathers in their houses? Etc. Etc. Etc.
And then, because the social good–stopping abuse–is so great, the cost of scapegoating black people seems worth it to the non-black do-gooders.
Which then reinforces the bonds of racism.