By Hipolito Munoz, Managing Editor/Publisher
What are the chances that your Anglo friend will say something that will sound racist at some point and time? However, if you are truly their friend and you respect them and they respect you, you will know that intention is critical. What about you, have you listened closely to some of the stuff you may be saying? If you say something about them and their whiteness, culture or color, guess what?
As people of color, we must see past their words, and must try and understand also what the reason for those comments are. We have also made such comments against those that we feel threatened by. We must be able to take those opportunities to create a better and healthier conversation around the issue of power. Racism is about power and fear, especially the power to shame and destroy a whole people based on fear of what they may do to you.
Your friend, if she or he really is your intimate friend, is your best ally, you are the best source of truth for them. Comments that may be inappropriate will be at some point and time hurled in a web of anger or confusion, if you think they are racists at heart, why are you hanging out with them? Are you a masochist or are you trying to find out what the “other side” is up to? May be you are the racist and are creating a false and flawed relationship just to see what happens. Is that fair to your “friend?”
What about your comments about Anglos and people of color that are not from your “tribe?” We tend to use words that have painful histories that we personally have not experienced, so we find it okay to fling them out there with the most effective follow up, “Just Sayin”. Just because we are not the people in power, we can create the same conundrum.
We are only human, and that “we” includes our friends, we all make mistakes, and our friends are not perfect, which you probably already know, and is one of the reasons you are friends.