A Short Video on American Meritocracy and Black History Month

Being that it is Black History Month, I am sure that some of you have heard people say, “Where is White History Month? If everyone is equal, then why do black people get an entire month dedicated to their history?” If you haven’t heard a white person ask those questions before (snarky they may be), I assure you that those people are out there, and I have encountered many of them. So, I am posting this short and easy to understand video, The Definitive Response to Jerks Asking, ‘But What About White History Month?,’ because it addresses these questions while providing solid commentary on some of the topics we discussed in last night’s class. I, being in the fields of History and Sociology, have conducted a fair amount of research on the history of race and meritocracy in the United States, and, I must say, this video is worth watching. I actually plan to show it to my students the next time I lecture on race/ethnicity and the struggle for equality. Also, the links that are mentioned at the end are worth checking out too.

1 thought on “A Short Video on American Meritocracy and Black History Month

  1. Cool video, and cool links in the video also, thanks for posting. On a personal sidenote, when I was a kid, I spent pretty much all my elementary school years in a setting where I was the only white person. Every other kid had darker skin and dark hair. This was in a rural area of Malaysia, where most of the population was of Malay descent (Malaysia’s general population is a mix of people from Malay, Chinese, and Indian descent). I stuck out like a sore thumb. But instead of being marginalized, I was put up on a pedestal. Everyone wanted to be my friend, they would always compliment my fair skin (more like white pasty skin), and even though I was painfully shy, I was put in the spotlight a lot because all the other students thought I had special abilities. One specific example that always comes to mind is the day we played basketball for the first time in gym class. Despite being the shortest smallest kid in class and never having touched a basketball in my life, all the other students automatically assumed that because I was a westerner, I would rock at basketball and they wanted me to teach them how to play. I was mortified, I suck so bad at basketball, I didn’t even know how to bounce the ball properly and had never heard of a dribble. This sort of thing happened all the time in this school. So, the association of white with “better” and all the other advantageous assumptions that come with being white seem to occur even in countries that are not predominantly white.

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