it’s white people’s job to hold their friends/family accountable for white violence

June 7, 2017
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Western society, liberals and conservatives alike, generally believe that it’s the duty of the “Good Muslims” to keep tabs on the “Bad Muslims”. Imams, neighbors, acquaintances, and family alike are responsible for making sure their people aren’t up to some sinister shit. They must transform into secret police types, spying on the people around them and report it *immediately*.

Whenever there are is mass violence, be it terrorism done in the name of ISIS, or Al-Qaeda or a kid shooting up a schoolhouse, we ask, “Where were his parents and friends?” “Why didn’t they see the signs?” And in our shock and dismay, these questions are valid. And so often in Muslim communities, the people around those who commit these egregious acts of violence do in fact sense something is off and express or report concerns to others or the police. And, clearly, often, that is not enough for any measures to be taken that thwart possible attacks anyway. And the blame falls on the entire community.

By Erin White*, AFROPUNK contributor

Not with mass shootings committed by white boys. Then, and always, whiteness is a ticket for individuality where one’s actions speak for themselves, not an entire community. Not all of these people who perpetrate acts of ultraviolence are severally mentally ill. And even for those who are, the alt.-right, white nationalist, anti-black, anti-immigrant, white supremacist thread that runs so deeply within American culture only acts as a trigger for violence and terror.

In the shadows of the three terror attacks in London, here in America, press coverage and public conversation about the series of white supremacist related murders has been barely above a whisper. An after thought. Another demonstrable example of “Good Whites“ ignoring the culture of white violence and terror around them to point their fingers at Muslims instead.

Is it so unreasonable to ask White People to hold themselves to the same standard that they hold literally everyone else?

So many “Good Whites” refuse to continuously have the hard conversations with their folk, and that’s supposed to be understandable to those who are dying because these things aren’t being said and not enough people are willing to say real shit at the risk of creating”division”. White People were too uncomfortable to talk to their friends and family about white supremacy and racism in a serious way during the 2016 election when it really mattered, but Muslims are supposed to actively identify and thwart terror threats like they’re on the FBI payroll? That’s interesting.

flickr/Mark Dixon

*Erin White is an Atlanta-based writer and AFROPUNK’s editorial and social media assistant. You can follow her on Tumblr or friend her on Facebook. Have a pitch or an inquiry? Shoot her an email at erin@afropunk.com.