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The Ex-it Interview
July 17, 2013
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July 18, 2013

Who Brought the White Girl?

By Michelle Alexander

Is race and segregation still an issue? As the fight for equality heats up and more of us are on the front lines demanding equality, dare I ask: What do your life, decisions, social circles, conversations, jokes, and thoughts say about the level of equality you operate from?

Michelle Alexander

Michelle Alexander

As a white woman who has usually dated women of another race, I have had some interesting experiences on the social scene. I remember walking into a girl party and overhearing someone shout, “Hey, who brought the white girl”? I have heard black women say, “Hey you are cute for a white chick” and my favorite, “I don’t normally date white girls but I would totally date you.” Huh?

Likewise, I have been to clubs or gatherings of predominantly white women and I was appalled by some of the racist remarks I overheard. Some of them were deliberate, and some just out of plain old ignorance and disregard for what is socially acceptable and downright, well, just right.

I’m not trying to be the whiny white chick who is complaining about how unfair it is that black women treat me different and don’t accept me and all that nonsense. I wouldn’t dare. I’m quite comfortable in whatever scene I’m in because I have learned to get in where I fit in. I understand racial inequity, and I think that the moment most people meet me, they know that I get it. I know I have no space to feel like a victim because someone wondered who brought the white girl to the predominantly black girl party. While I don’t always agree with the concept, I completely understand the need for sacred spaces for women of color. Saying that my folks have not been welcoming is an understatement and shame on them.

With all that being said, I still ask, what level of personal accountability do you bring to the table of equality? Are you a white woman who thinks its okay to make racial jokes because you think a woman of color isn’t listeningonly to realize that the white woman you are standing next to has bi-racial children and a black wife? Are you a black woman who will tell a white woman she is cute for a white girl, knowing that if the comment were reversed, it would be incredibly offensive? Do you even acknowledge your Latina or Asian sisters in the racial equation? In my book, we are all sisters and in this together. If the laws of sowing and reaping are legitimate, and we are expecting equality across the board, are you sowing that into your existence by the way you navigate through diversity in your spaces? We are all modern-day freedom riders on the bus to equality, and I think it’s important that while we celebrate our differences, we don’t let them divide us. We reap what we sow, so what does your garden look like?

Michelle is the founder of AGurlzGuide.org. She is a Coach, Mentor, Motivator, Public Speaker, Entrepreneur, Lover of People, Emotional Activist, and Life Enthusiast pursuing a life of amazing. 

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