Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Novelist Toni Morrison on White Supremacy

Acclaimed novelist Toni Morrison, while promoting her new novel God Help the Child, proved that she’s certainly not insulated from the racial climate in America. Morrison has often written about race, and explained in The Telegraph why she’s grown tired of people who keep calling for a conversation on race.
Writer Toni MOrrison is writing pieces for Chipotles cups and paper bags. www.naturallymoi.com
“People keep saying, ‘We need to have a conversation about race,’” she explains. “This is the conversation. I want to see a cop shoot a white unarmed teenager in the back,” Morrison says. “And I want to see a white man convicted for raping a black woman. Then when you ask me, ‘Is it over?’, I will say yes.”
Morrison is drawing attention to the disparity of how blacks are policed in comparison to other communities. Recently a black man in South Carolina was fatally shot in the back as he fled a police officer. The officer wasn’t arrested until video of the incident surfaced.
Morrison explained during the interview that we’re having a hard time getting past racism because there’s so much money in it.
“Race is the classification of a species. And we are the human race, period. But the other thing – the hostility, the racism – is the money-maker. And it also has some emotional satisfaction for people who need it.” She explains that slavery “moved this country closer to the economy of an industrialized Europe, far in advance of what it would have been.”
In a separate NPR interview, Morrison discussed why categorizing people by skin tone is problematic.
“Distinguishing color — light, black, in between — as the marker for race is really an error: It’s socially constructed, it’s culturally enforced and it has some advantages for certain people,” she says. “But this is really skin privilege — the ranking of color in terms of its closeness to white people or white-skinned people and its devaluation according to how dark one is and the impact that has on people who are dedicated to the privileges of certain levels of skin color.”

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