Dear White America: Letter to a New Minority
In America, being white has long meant never having to think about race. Whites have been able to assume that the culture, political leadership and their own neighborhoods would “look like them,” and the economy would work for them, so long as they played by the rules. Now, facing chronic economic insecurity, a multicultural pop culture, a black president and a future in which they will no longer be the majority, whites are growing anxious. This anxiety has helped create the Tea Party phenomenon and is characterized by the call to “take the country back” to a mythologized past. Using racialized nostalgia, the right seeks to enlist fearful whites in a movement for reactionary social and economic policies. But as Tim Wise explains, such an agenda will only further harm the nation’s people, including most whites. Only by embracing a progressive, multicultural future, can the hope of American democracy survive.