Monday, July 24, 2006

No More Air Conditioners? No More Ms Nice

Day two of this financial thing.

Had a lot of feelings.

Notice that I am cranky and not trying to hide it. (I'm showing myself, one of the things I admire about poc and raised poor folk, generally speaking) But in my case, it's all the oppressive stuff coming out at usually white, working-class or poor people. At least I'm not doing the polite middle-class thing but no, this just is not right and it's my chronic privilege stuff. I can feel it and it doesn't feel good. (Feeling good is not the goal, ending racism is.) But it has been there all along. I haven't gotten through it yet.

There's a deeper level I need to go. (But Max knew that.)

It shows right when I'm hot and sweaty, tired and impatient. The thing that prompted this was searching for an air conditioner and going from store to store and they were all sold out. Even the fans. I just kept getting less and less friendly to whoever I came in contact with.

Like the "I'll get mine and screw you" syndrome which typically typifies classist and racist chronic conditioning. (Argh but get me MY air conditioning. No! I don't THINK so white girl!) ;-)

Sort of like really rude at times. I have been pretty politically correct for several years now (hmmf, snort) except to my kids and husband when no one is around.

I was a jerk to this okay white older guy working at the post office because he wanted me to bring in my home mortgage contract to prove that I bought the home and so he'd give me my mailbox key. That annoys me because all the mail will be addressed to me and I had my ID with me. And I now have to go back later. That is so stupid! So I started mouthing off to him and another postal worker, a woman who I'd chummed with just PC-days before, looked really annoyed as she walked in and heard me mouthing off to this guy.

I am usually on a longer fuse. The other day I yelled at my kids in the street here in our new neighborhood. We are the minority as white. But it actually seemed to clear the air and everybody just felt a lot more comfortable on our street with us. It felt that way. Who knows. I could be on the moon.

it just seemed a little tense before that.

Decided to, instead of the casual term "girlfriend" this and "girlfriend" that, if the person is white I'm going to say "white girl" this and "white girl" that. Woah, I'll see what happens! The invisibility of whiteness and privilege has got to go.

I did go deep this a.m. with my peer who I work on ending racism with. She's native and counsels me on being white and pushes me to meet and get close to Native Americans. Uh, easy stuff to look at right? Well, I'm sure that moving, being in boxes and keeping genocide in your face can make you pissy. Especially a good white girl like me who never in a million years thought I had anything to do with any of that. And I certainly couldn't like do anything about it except maybe ripoff a little Indian spirituality here and there? Guess again. Ms Peer sees to it, demands that I not romaniticize her people.

Chocolate here I come. No, actually I'm having carrot stix. (bitch moan)

Done blogging for now.

News is about 200 (wun-derful readers) stampeded to my blogspot site yesterday because of links from Ampersand and some sybermoms thread posting on what happened with Frontier Airlines and Gilbert Tuhabonye. That was neat. They were all reading the baby boys, not born sexist article.

Ending white racism isn't going to feel all peachy and yummy for us white folks. After all, it demands some pain. Why? Because we haven't had to face any of it. We haven't had to NOT have our bon bons so to speak. It's the turmoil inside that is, I think, part of the very very first step in being willing to change. To heal from being born into, trained into and then passively going-along-with our oppressor material.

So I didn't get an air conditioner. I drove around for hours for two days straight. This white raised-privileged (owning class) woman didn't get her own way. And sitting in the feelings, getting them out with my Native American counselor--listening to her first as well--is part of the pathway OUT of my oppressor role.

And this is not just me white one, it's US.


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