Whiteness is a Zero-Sum Game

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Teju Cole wrote about the “cold violence” of the Israeli occupation of Palestine at The Guardian last week. I shared a piece on Medium about how the subtle myths we perpetuate through pop culture are worth interrogating, because they can and do have violent consequences for people of color.

When we ask whether we’ve gone “too far” in creating spaces for people of color to explore and articulate nuanced, intricate life experiences, we are reinforcing the idea that only one narrative — that people of color represent a threat to white people — can or should endure. Left unchecked, this belief is the bedrock for the justification of everything from forced deportations to police killings. We cannot do the hard work of reshaping both the limits of our own empathy and the structures of our institutions if we continue to buy into the logic of the zero-sum game.