Race remains a central issue, perhaps THE central issue, in the United States today.
More than 150 years after the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution abolished slavery, nearly six-in-ten Americans say race relations are bad and more than half say President Trump has made race relations worse. These statistics come from a discouraging SURVEY released in April by the non-partisan Pew Research Center.
Perhaps more startling is a March poll from The Hill which shows 75% of Republican voters say WHITE Americans are currently subject to discrimination. Along with 55% of Independents and 38% of Democrats.
Clearly this represents a significant public disconnect in the problem of racism versus the perception of racism.
My own opinions about how deep the problem of racism goes in this country have changed considerably in the last several years, primarily after reading books like:
• The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson
• White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo
• Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
• Deep Denial by Rev. David Billings
• The Case for Reparations by Ta-Nehisi Coates
• Waking up White by Debby Irving
• Strangers in Their Own Land by Arlie Russell Hochschild
And also, after reflecting on my trip this year to the Deep South.
But nothing has helped me understand how deeply engrained white supremacy and privilege are better than the podcast series, “Seeing White”, hosted by Journalist John Biewen, with support from Rutgers Professor Dr. Chenjerai Kumanyika.
This 14-part series takes a political, historical, economic, and social look at what it means to be white in the United States and all the systemic ways that has advantaged us in our 400 year history in North America. Scene on Radio is a podcast produced by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University. (I previously recommended its 12-part series on Men.)
The series requires a bit of a time commitment. But I guarantee it will COMPLETELY shift your understanding of race. So consider this a good investment for some long drive or plane flight. It also makes for great family discussion.
Here’s a link for a 2:00 preview of Seeing White from YouTube.
You can listen to the series online at the Scene on Radio Website.
OR subscribe to it at Apple Podcasts or through the iTunes Store.
OR subscribe on Android.
OR listen via RSS.