theodore M I R A L D I mpa ... editor, publisher, writer. katherine molé mfa ... art director

Friday, July 17, 2020

The National Museum of African American History is NOT Actually SORRY for Its Ultra-Racist 'WHITENESS' Graphic

America Protests Washington

Becket Adams

The National Museum of African American History and Culture is not actually sorry for having promoted an ultra-racist graphic that claimed hard work, the nuclear family, and even punctuality are traits exclusive only to white people.

The organization’s administrators are merely embarrassed that their descent into ultra-racialist politics saw them accidentally supporting white supremacy-style rhetoric. They evidently still believe that white people are animals to be analyzed in the same manner that Jane Goodall studied monkeys. They simply regret the manner in which they presented their beliefs.

The museum has removed the offending graphic, titled "Aspects and Assumptions of Whiteness and White Culture in the United States," from its “Talking About Race” online portal. The webpage now includes an editor’s note, explaining that the Smithsonian Institution-maintained organization did not mean to go full-David Duke when it said that white people are unique for the importance they place on hard work, competitive drive, objectivity, the “scientific method," self-reliance, and hope.

“Since yesterday, certain content in the ‘Talking About Race’ portal has been the subject of questions that we have taken seriously. We have listened to public sentiment and have removed a chart that does not contribute to the productive discussion we had intended,” the museum's page now reads. “The site's intent and purpose are to foster and cultivate conversations that are respectful and constructive and provide increased understanding.”

The since-removed graphic was based on the work of so-called diversity consultant Judith Katz, who is, of course, white. Katz works now as a leading executive at a consulting firm whose clients include FedEx, Merck, and Toyota, as noted by the Washington Examiner’s Byron York.                                            


The editor’s note on the museum’s webpage continues, “As an educational institution, we value meaningful dialogue and believe that we are stronger when we can pause, listen, and reflect — even when it challenges us to reconsider our approach. We hope that this portal will be an ever-evolving place that will continue to grow, develop, and ensure that we listen to one another in a spirit of civility and common cause.”

Is that so?

This stated commitment to “growing” and “meaningful dialogue” would be more believable were it not for the fact that the rest of the museum’s “Whiteness” portal remains unchanged. It still includes, for example, a video of former corporate consultant and full-time pseudo-scientific Hitlerian racialist Robin DiAngelo. The online portal still discusses white people in terms of “white supremacy,” “white nationalism,” and “white fragility.” The page even includes a section titled “Confronting Whiteness.”

“Whiteness and white racialized identity refer to the way that white people, their customs, culture, and beliefs operate as the standard by which all other groups of are compared,” the page still reads. “Whiteness is also at the core of understanding race in America. Whiteness and the normalization of white racial identity throughout America's history have created a culture where nonwhite persons are seen as inferior or abnormal.”

It adds, “Whiteness (and its accepted normality) also exist as everyday microaggressions toward people of color. Acts of microaggressions include verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights, snubs or insults toward nonwhites. Whether intentional or not, these attitudes communicate hostile, derogatory, or harmful messages.”

The racist graphic based on a white diversity consultant’s handiwork no longer exists on the museum’s website. Yet the “Whiteness” page maintained by the federally funded organization still discusses an entire race as a monolithic, oppressive entity, and not as a group made up of individual people with individual personalities.

The racist graphic may be gone, but the racist “Whiteness” page remains. The museum did not actually learn anything this week. It is merely scrambling to placate righteously indignant critics.


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