Racial colorblindness, a secret enemy

December 7, 2017

Mira LaNasa
Racial colorblindness, declining to acknowledge one’s race, negatively impacts colored people in more ways than one. “Research has shown that hearing colorblind messages predict negative outcomes among Whites, such as greater racial bias and negative affect, cites Psychology Today.

“I don’t see color” is not something a colored person wants to hear. Racial colorblindness is an attempt at proving one is not racist, but the term “racial colorblindness” is actually hurting, not helping. Sometimes, ignorance is not bliss.

Racial colorblindness is a person refusing to acknowledge one’s race. It is a middle-aged white woman telling her black friend, “You’re no different than me, I don’t see color.” It’s harmful, really. Not only does racial colorblindness ignore our country’s very real racial divide, it also invalidates cultural and racial pride.

A 2015 poll from Huffington Post declared that only 31 percent of white people believe racism is a “very serious” problem nationally, while that percentage is nearly doubled by the views of black people at 68 percent. Some are baffled by this, but many white people do not believe they are part of the problem. This is especially present in those who “do not see color.” This portion of Americans also includes those who do not see a racial issue at all.

“One-tenth of white respondents said that ‘racism is an issue in my community and I’m able to take meaningful action against it.’  A quarter said that ‘racism is an issue in my community but there’s not much I can do about it.’ But the majority — 56 percent — said that  ‘racism isn’t really an issue in my community’ and thus, there wasn’t anything they could do to address it,” cites Huffington Post.

We hear “ignorance is bliss,” on occasion and the statement seems to be true for some. In this case, it is more true that ignorance is blistering.”

We hear “ignorance is bliss,” on occasion and the statement seems to be true for some. In this case, it is more true that ignorance is blistering. Ignoring one’s race can be incredibly insulting and can be seen as an attempt to erase any struggles or personal experiences related to race.

“Research has shown that hearing colorblind messages predict negative outcomes among Whites, such as greater racial bias and negative affect; likewise colorblind messages cause stress in ethnic minorities, resulting in decreased cognitive performance (Holoien et al., 2011). Given how much is at stake, we can no longer afford to be blind. It’s time for change and growth. It’s time to see,” reports Psychology Today.

It is easy to see where people are coming from when they claim to be racially colorblind. They mean well, mostly. It is their way of relating to a colored person and their way of attempting to be the least racist and most politically correct as possible. In no way is their attempt in vain. Their effort is almost always appreciated by a person of color, however with more awareness, could be more helpful. Now that more and more people are beginning to admit to having a race issue in our country, we can focus on how to solve the issue and how to educate one another.

As Psychology Today said, it is unacceptable to live ignorant to race. It is insulting and harming the already ever present racial divide. Now is a time for evolution. Our country could stand to be a little more self aware. The next step is to spread the message to friends and neighbors, correcting one another in the least offensive way possible, to stop being ignorant. Stop to think: are you the problem?


7 Responses to “Racial colorblindness, a secret enemy”

  1. Alyssa Bump on December 14th, 2017 5:16 pm

    I was drawn to this article because of the picture and I was fascinated by it. The tone is very serious as it should be, because this is a serious topic. It had a good lay out by having quotes and facts. I personally didn’t realize this was a problem so I feel informed about the topic and now I know that this is a problem.

  2. Susan Hubbard on December 18th, 2017 12:31 am

    Takes a clear position and has many polls and statistics. Article points blame for all racism at white people but in my opinion that is a step back from what this article is trying to get across because obviously not all white people are racist and part of a problem so that is a false stereotype based on race. Other then that it was played out nicely and changing bliss to blistering was very creative.

  3. Lilly Sample on December 18th, 2017 7:43 pm

    I LOVED the photo that went along with this article, and that is a big reason that I clicked on it. When people say “I don’t see color.” they’re usually trying to ‘distance’ themselves from racism, and this article addresses how that is harmful for people. The sources you used were very reliable. Great job!

  4. Rose Junko on December 18th, 2017 10:42 pm

    I was drawn into this article by a combination of the title and the photo, they’re both very intriguing. I absolutely agree that racism is a problem in society, but you could’ve expanded more on different races. Otherwise, great idea, and very well written!

  5. Emma Polucha on December 18th, 2017 11:41 pm

    This article first paragraph is so strong. It has such a deep meaning behind it and keeps the reader reading more. I love the topic since it is such an important issue that affects so many people. The points are very clearly made and are backed up strongly with facts and research. I absolutely love this article!

  6. Andrew Phan on January 16th, 2018 9:10 pm

    The photo was interesting and a cool puzzle. I was figuring out who each one was and saw Bakange and Amit. The story itself is strong and flows well. Using official surveys gives the article strength. The article as you read it has emotion in it and is not just a story being written but it has a deep meaning behind it. The reasons are supported by solid facts. Many people can relate to this article making it relevant.

  7. Michelle Burton on March 11th, 2018 9:08 pm

    The picture really made me want to read the article. There was so much information in this article and it really was interesting to read about. It sort of puts some perspective into my life. The facts fit really nicely into the article and really proved a point

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