We deserve a WET

Excellent post over at Ally Work about the lack of explicitly white-oriented institution relative to black-oriented ones, and how to explain it to questioning white folks.  The most educational part for me was this:

I often make a joke about an insider stereotype that many blacks have of whites–white people’s hair smells like a dog when it is wet.  I ask how many of my students have heard of this.  Usually, the only students who have heard it are black.  Many students laugh because this stereotype seems absurd.  Then, I say, “How many of you have heard the stereotype that blacks are violent and crime prone?”  Almost all the students raise their hands, and nobody laughs.  I make the case that the first one is humorous to them because it really doesn’t have an impact on the day to day lives of whites, but the crime stereotype isn’t funny because it has a profound impact on blacks.

The story does a good job of showing the difference between stereotypes and racist stereotypes.  It takes people one step further towards understanding the power component of racism.

No I’m going to go wash off the dog smell…

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