If I dress myself up in ‘good guy’ garb, does that make me a trustworthy member of the community?
What if I align myself with purportedly ‘good deed’ groups, does that fill me with goodness, through some sort of osmosis?
If I employ performative acts of helping others, is that proof of an altruistic heart?
Can whole groups of people inherently possess goodness through their surface, alliances, or performative acts?
What then, is at the core of the supremacist belief that white people are inherently good- even better than those who we deem as ‘other’? Is it the white person’s pigment-free epidermis? Our white church alliances? Our white helpful acts?
While acceptance and defense of the ‘goodness of white people’ concept ultimately results in unequal distribution of rights and resources, this goodness concept also restricts white people from evolving past our own racial bias. Frequently, when white people are faced with our own racist acculturation, we reflexively employ strategies to deflect the truth, in order to quickly protect and preserve our comfort.
At the core of our comfort is the myth of our white goodness. Our discomfort arises when faced with the truth that our white goodness doesn’t exist. The question that tries to bubble up to our conscious awareness is, ‘How can I be a good person if I hold bias/prejudice against other people?’.
Protecting our white goodness myth will disable any growth beyond bias/prejudice. Evolving past our own bias demands dismantling and discarding the myth of white goodness.
Accepting that the result of our racism acculturation is a flawed self, disguised as white goodness, is at the core of the work we need to do in order to dismantle our role in societal racism.