According to Wise, “White normativity” is the standard by which all other ethnic groups find themselves measured. Consequently, the White America over the years has taken many things for granted and have assumed that everyone is normal, which encompasses the country and culture. This assertion has led them to think that, within both their experiences, theirs has mattered, thus were normative for all groups (71). White normativity, which is long untested, according to Wise, is challenged on a “political, cultural, economic and demographic front” (74). The meaning of this phrase is that the challenges’ affecting the nation spreads to all races/ethnic/gender groups living in the United States. Therefore, the changes affect all aspects of living, which includes the political, cultural, economic and demographic fronts. These fronts are attributes that generate the history (present, past and future) of the nation and hence, it is important for all individuals to look into the displayed fronts. In conducted research, all these fronts are variables that build up on the thesis problem and analysis provided will use the variables in identifying the problem and looking for a lasting solution.
White normativity raises concerns on dramatic cultural aspects of transforming the modern society. A few decades ago, most or all pop culture icons, in the television, film, music and the like, were White America (77). Nevertheless, the changing realities have seen to the rise of black stars who have managed to create a name for them and revolutionize the image of the black community. These changes have caused the White America to accept and freely in productive activities with the colored people, which improves their economic status. In addition, these realities have improved on the political front of the modern society in American since they are able to interrelate with other demographic fronts in stabilizing the economy of the country by participating in global trade activities. The demographic have created a platform for the nation to educate the population on the importance of working together despite class. Many are the aspects have changed and with time many more changes are expected to occur that affect the existence of both parties in one community. The solution to this is for scholars to comprehend the current actualities, as well as, future realities that are of an increasingly multicultural America. This information helps the White America understand their role in an evolving society. They need to gain knowledge of how to live together and cooperate in finding solutions that stop acts of racism. It is time for Americans to make a change because it reflects on their image in the global perspective.
In his assertions, for the first time, these challenges have managed to make race salient to the community of White people (80). It is evident that we are different from the celebrities, in schools, neighborhoods, people we see at malls, and president. The White Americans are privileged to experience the best from their governments, which includes attending the best schools, taking the best employment opportunities and positions and access to health facilities. In the black communities, these are not needs, but wants and they endeavor to endure with what they have and move around the available resources in meeting their life goals and objectives. The nation tries to incorporate the needs of the black man, but the black or colored groups of individuals are the underprivileged group that is being trampled on for long. However, it should be eminent that we are not that different from colored people when it comes to economic hardship and insecurity. Wise elaborates this further by using the Tea party movement, as an example, where movement is noted as “white anxiety operationalized as a political movement” (111). Consequently, he emphasizes on the movement not being a racist in the classical sense, but somewhat, makes a compelling argument on the views of Tea Party supporters. They either unwittingly or purposefully have their foundations raised on racism.
The privileged White Americans have been able to form alliances and movements that serve their interests and thus, the Black or colored community members face the problem of not being presented in universal/global meetings. The pleas of the black people are not met because of lack of presentation and the existing difference of realities. The movements converge and discuss on issues relating to the black race, which leads to racist talks and actions. They are able to view the black ethnic group as a threat to their well-being. Moreover, they are actors who promote and share in the same dreams of making America a better nation. Alliances and movements need to be banned in order to promote equality in the different groups and accordingly, raise awareness on the importance of working together. The perspectives elaborated by Wise clearly state on the issues affecting both White and Black people and gives recommendations on what needs to be done to mitigate the prevailing problems.
Wise discusses on how the White America can best mitigate the stemming anxiety brought about by changing United States demographics. His suggestions reveal that the White America had the chance to be committed, but chose to be less committed in advancing the myth of hard work amongst all (which is true especially when paired with White privilege) and, in its place, made their attempt to foster real equity hence, lowering White anxiety. The aim of promoting equality is to be able to mitigate the existing divide and unite people. In addition, this leads to an improved economy and team building is fostered. Equity will encourage individuals to be mindful of others’ needs and preferences and hence, make proper use of available resources. This reduces on wastages made, which facilitates sharing of limited resources. It is true that majority of the people have not been prepared by White anxiety to deal with the changing realities facing the new America. As a result, changes that occur become unsettling among the White people.
In conclusion, White normativity is a concept that needs to be eliminated because it causes pain and suffering among many individuals of color. This lowers their chances of being to be appreciated and respected in the society because they lack the power to control and change situations. The book is indeed educative and touches on current events facing communities and instills knowledge that will be used for coming generations. The essence of the saying, “being white means never having to think about it,” is fading with time. However, it reflects on the history of the nation and people need to learn the importance of forging ahead rather than leaning on past events. The future of the nation lies in the decisions and direction we make as individuals living in the nation. The wise will refuse to be directed towards racist movements and alliances that control our living.
Wise, Tim. Dear White America: Letter to a New Minority. San Francisco, CA: City Lights
Books, 2012. Print.