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RonnieM Assessment 1

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on May 9, 2006 at 3:23:12 pm

By Ronnie Miller

Jeff Hitchcock’s “White American Culture”, was comprised in Washington D.C. July 20th, 1996. Throughout this essay Jeff Hitchcock really tries to show the readers the importance of accepting your own race before you can actually accept another’s race. He mainly focuses on trying to get white Americans to not just ignore the issue of race and racism but to actually accept their white heritage, be proud and learn to become an interracial community who knows where they have come from.

Jeff begins this essay by speaking about the home and its importance to everyone. Whether you are black or white, green, or yellow, the home is very important to every culture. He goes on to explain that “Home is where the heart is”, and that your home should be the one place that anybody should be able to go to their home and be free of their race and just be a family. Also in the beginning of this essay he really adds his own personal experience with race and multi cultural existence by giving you a brief auto-biography on himself being a white American, his wife being a African American and Native American, and their six year old adopted son who is also African American, along with their four year old birth son who is multi-cultural. Jeff really tries to show the reader that although he has a family they are all products of different races. He doesn’t want to lose the heritage brought by all aspects of race in the family but yet at the same time he wants his family to co-exist as one.

Jeff then goes on to explain that he had recently met with one of his African American friends and he had told Jeff that “It feels like the world has declared war on black people”. Although many people today say they are not racist and lead somewhat quite lives without actually being racist toward other’s, that doesn’t mean that racism is going to go away. Jeff wants everyone here especially white Americans who turn a cheek to racism to not just ignore the problem but rather accept what you are and accept the fact that whether anybody likes it or not racism is still a problem, and the only way to get past it is to confront it.

About half way through the essay Jeff begins to use examples to tackle another critical aspect of assimilation of light skinned minorities vs. darker skinned minorities. He goes on to explain that although mostly un- intentional the white community begins to accept lighter skinned minorities as “Honorary white persons”. Granted taking a step toward accepting any minorities into another minority group is a big step, it can at times just make the gap between African Americans and white Americans fell that much bigger. He voices his own opinion by stating that “We must help the Asian American, the Hispanic American and Native American communities resist being seduced by the strange American polarity of white and black”. Jeff points out that in South America where racial mixing is much more accepted, but whiteness is still favored, is a step toward change but everybody needs to get past the whiteness part being favored and just have all races co-existing all with equal acceptances regardless of color.

Throughout this essay Jeff tries to show the reader through his own life situations and how everybody is in contact with racism in one way or another. He tries to get you passionately caught up in the subject by adding examples from his friends and personal experience about their experiences with racism. Throughout the essay the mood was surprisingly positive with hints of constructive criticism. This is a must when comparing two sides. He also tired to contrast to use some contrast when was telling us about his life as a white American and his wife as an African American, also very important when trying to hook your reader.

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