In 2019, we decided to host anti-racism events in white women’s dining rooms for one specific reason: To turn the age-old adage, “it’s rude to talk about politics at the dinner table” on its head.
This is what we’ve learned—if you don’t talk about racism, you can’t dismantle it. But it isn’t just over the dinner table that this “niceness” rules.
In the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder in 2020, you were eager, frenzied even, to do this work. A mere two years later, not only is that excitement for anti-racism work gone, the pendulum has swung in the other direction, into a verifiable whitelash against anti-racism work.
If white womanhood is a house, your need to be perfect is the foundation.
It is this need for perfection that makes it impossible to engage in antiracism work.
Being perfect is the key to your happiness, to your success, to your very existence.
Perfect hair. Perfect clothes. Perfect grades. Perfect nails. Perfect weddings. Perfect bodies. Perfect adoring and supportive wife and mother. Perfect employee and colleague.
This is black hatred in the raw: the hatred of competence itself. Whites do not strive to be “perfect.” We strive to be competent. According to what standard? Why, the standard of competence, of course! But what is competence, you ask? I hold to a two-part definition:
- The ability to choose what to do appropriately to your context;
- The ability to do it to a high degree of exactitude.
Obviously, a more specific answer is impossible, since the possible contexts are beyond anyone’s ability to enumerate. But whites of either sex learn early in life that while people might disagree about some details, there will always be broad agreement on the greater part of the standard of competence that applies to a given context.
In engineering, the field from which I retired, the standard is tight on matters deemed important, but loose on others. It’s why we write performance specifications: without one the implementer wouldn’t know what to produce. Other occupations have other ways of approaching the subject. Homemakers don’t have performance specifications for their work, but every one of them can tell the difference between a clean home and a dirty one…laundered clothes and the dirty ones in the hamper…a hot, nutritious meal and junk grabbed at random in a convenience store.
“Perfect” doesn’t enter into it. There is no such thing as a perfect program or a perfectly clean house. But each of us has standards for when the job is done. On average, whites have higher standards than blacks. It’s blacks’ problem if they don’t like it.
It’s employers’ problem, too. The “civil rights” laws have made it so. But that’s a subject for another tirade.
Throughout history, the less-competent have striven to water down the general standard of competence, that they might not be compared unfavorably to their more competent countrymen. It’s natural, but if there’s a better demonstration that not everything that’s natural is therefore good, it hasn’t occurred to me this morning. That the black racialists of the “anti-racism” grift would disagree doesn’t bother me one whit…and once again, it’s their problem if they don’t like it.