Polarized Political Landscape Enhanced by Communities of Color

In the USA Article November 7, 2016, Kent Styler is quoted as saying “It’s where you live, what color you are.”  If any statement is aligned with Chapter 5 of book “Communities” this one is.  Another article in the Washington Post had a comment from a Latino activist that their Latino community does not have enough political power yet.  Such absurdity exists throughout our country and had amplified “us versus them” mentality almost beyond repair.  When we hyphenate ourselves we separate ourselves from being Americans.

Alignment with a community of color creates division and perpetuates “us versus them.” Some of the very same people who fought for Dr. King’s dream of content of character versus color of skin are now aligning themselves to the color of their skin. So many in the original civil rights movement abhorred this alignment and wanted to change; now they want to change back? What are they thinking? This retro mentality translates to “us versus white males” or whites in general, and it is devastating to diversity. I realize that in most inner cities, there are neighborhoods composed of mostly one race or another or possibly a concentration of a certain religion. Those in the media, however, and in the communities, themselves, attribute their beliefs about an entire race to historical concepts of victim-hood or individuals’ inability to make up their own minds. That portrayal should be an insult to every one of that race.

Trying to tap into the votes of an entire community may be prudent in those communities where people have historically, and with little reason, voted for the Democratic Party, since they are worse off than when President Obama took over nearly eight years ago. Repeatedly, we see situations where it seems that every race, ethnicity, and gender in this country is unable to deviate from what is expected of them—except for whites, who seem to be the only ones capable of making up their own minds. I do not believe it is the absolute truth, but so many in communities of color carry misdirected anger and even hate toward whites and especially white cops.

White males do live in these same communities of color but are the minority. Yet, unlike their neighbors of different races, white males, it seems, are free to choose to be liberal, conservative, libertarian, independent, etc. White males are also able to live in or beside these “communities,” or in any other part of the country of their choosing. It seems that referring to the white-male vote or a white community is immediately translated as a reference to racism, white power, privilege—well, you get the picture. Nerves are really frayed from all sides, and diversity is melting down.

All others in communities of color must be victims or unable to succeed in our diverse society because of white males. A community of color translates to a code in these “communities” for combating racism and victimization and thus enhancing “us versus them.” It is impossible not to divide rather than include, for interests are self-serving to a race, ethnicity, or religion. Those in the “communities” who choose to deviate from what is expected of them (such as being conservative) are ostracized, criticized, or just plain extinguished from participation in the community. A “community of color,” then, would appear to be any color other than white, and it absolutely would not include white males. Where is the desire for race-relations dialogue and not confrontation?

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