35 Types of Post-Racial Racism

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Last week, in response to the lynching photo found at a Joe’s Crab Shack in Minnesota, I wrote a piece explaining “post-racial racism” (which has also been referred to as “Chad Crow”—Jim Crow’s laid-back cousin):

In post-racial 21st-century America, no one actually wants to admit to being racist. They’ll do racist things, say racist words, think racist thoughts, support racist business, vote for racist politicians and even willingly benefit from racist policies and business practices, but the moment you actually bring up racism, they’re like, “Who, me? Never! I can’t be racist. Andre Iguodala is my favorite athlete, and my best friend almost had a black girlfriend in 2004!” And they do this because owning up to it and letting everyone know exactly who they are could be social suicide. …

[Post-racial racism] is an evolved form of racism that allows people to exist ensconced within racism’s confines while never having to complete a registration form …


I then listed 13 examples of this type of racism. But there are so many more that I decided to extend that list to 35:

1. “Racism doesn’t really exist” racism;

2. “You’re the real racist for thinking and talking about racism” racism;

3. “I don’t have a racist bone in my body” racism;

4. “It’s a class thing, not a race thing” racism;

5. “If black people want to get over racism, they need to stop segregating themselves” racism;

6. “I know what’s good for you better than you do” racism;

7. “I hate the NBA” racism;

8. “I’m not a racist; I’m a realist” racism;

9. “Look how cool and witty and ironic I am when I do this remarkably offensive thing” racism;

10. “Can you provide some evidence that the racist thing that happened was actually racist and not just happenstance?” racism;

11. “Let’s talk about diversity and have panels about diversity and invite the media to these panels about diversity but never actually make a real effort to be more diverse” racism;

12. “I know what happened was racist, but my feelings were hurt when you pointed it out, and we need to talk about my feelings instead of the racist thing now” racism; and

13. “I don’t think anyone is paying attention, so let me sneak this really racist thing in real quick, like a cheat day for my no-racism diet” racism.

14. “I have a black boyfriend/girlfriend/husband/wife, so I can’t be racist” racism;

15. “I had sex with a black person and that sex resulted in a black child, so I can’t be racist” racism;

16. “Although I was born to white parents, I do black women’s hair and went to an HBCU, so I believe I’m black now” racism;

17. “If black people can say ‘n—ga,’ why can’t I?” racism;

18. “Are we sure he’s not a Muslim?” racism;

19. “I don’t hate him because he’s black. I hate him because he’s a Muslim” racism;

20. “I know I’ve seen scantily clad high-fashion models in ads on TV before, but scantily clad curvy and/or plus-size black women offend me” racism;

21. “Rap isn’t a legitimate form of music” racism;

22. “Scarlett Johansson brings the perfect perspective and aesthetic to this movie about the Nigerian princess” racism;

23. “Although my test scores were pretty aggressively and demonstratively average, I’m going to the Supreme Court because there’s no way these black kids should have been accepted instead of me” racism;

24. “Wait, so they’re black in the movie? This ruins the movie for me because that’s not how I pictured them when I read the book, even though their complexion was clearly described in the book” racism;

25. “Of course a suave and deadly British government operative with a racially neutral name can’t possibly be played by a black guy” racism;

26. “Perhaps you didn’t do anything, but someone who happens to be black committed a crime at some point in the recent past, so since you’re also black, I’ll need to tackle, cuff and question you” racism;

27. “If black people are tired of police harassment, maybe they should stop committing crimes” racism;

28. “It’s Halloween! Everyone has offensive costumes, so why should me being white prevent me from being Kunta Kinte?” racism;

29. “Yeah, we see it’s the top show across all demographics, but it stars black people, so we’re not going to spend any money on it” racism;

30. “I don’t see race” racism;

31. “I’m not racist or anything, but we don’t want black people here because they’ll decrease our property values” racism;

32. “Why didn’t you go to a real school instead of an HBCU?” racism;

33. “It’s not appropriation; it’s appreciation” racism;

34. “Cornrows, as modeled here by Kylie Jenner, are the season’s newest fashion trend” racism;

35. “Oh, Tasha’s cool. She’s black, but she’s not, like, black black or anything” racism.

Damon Young is the editor-in-chief of VerySmartBrothas.com. He is also a contributing editor at Ebony.com. He lives in Pittsburgh and he really likes pancakes. You can reach him at damon@verysmartbrothas.com.