Malcolm X by Spike Lee was on recently...

Illustration for article titled Malcolm X by Spike Lee was on recently...

I watched Malcom X for the first time recently. I want to talk about this quote from his letter from Mecca.

I am not a racist.... In the past I permitted myself to be make sweeping indictments of all white people, the entire white race and these generalizations have caused injuries to some whites who perhaps did not deserve to be hurt. Because of the spiritual enlightenment which I was blessed to receive as a result of my recent pilgrimage to the Holy city of Mecca, I no longer subscribe to sweeping indictments of any one race. I am now striving to live the life of a true...Muslim. I must repeat that I am not a racist nor do I subscribe to the tenants of racism. I can state in all sincerity that I wish nothing but freedom, justice and equality, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for all people.


I was actually kind of stunned to hear the quote because it's so foreign to the discussion we have today; ie. racism must be built on a background of oppression and black people or other marginalized groups therefore cannot, by definition, be racist towards whites.

But is there a word for when a marginalized group dislikes a majority group based on sweeping generalities? (I'm not trying to start a firestorm, but just in case I did put this on my own kinja and am sharing it, instead of plopping it into GT wholesale.) I mean, we know it happens, but what do we call it when it does? Like, what's our Groupthink-approved verbiage, not "but why can't blacks be racissssst," whined the white person.


Further thoughts - gah, that movie. That life. As a white, liberal woman, my emotions are still all over the place. From a very prickly "hey, whoa, I knew he was extreme but damn..." (I know, but there's definitely some "whoa, didn't know that") to "aw, fuck, this country" to "fuck them," to "sobs, hiccups, sobs." (Also, damn, Angela Bassett.)

ETA: Thank you all, I honestly wasn't sure that bigotry or prejudice were okay, either.

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