Things are not always as simple as they seem. We all like to think, “If I were discriminated against for being white, I would make a huge fuss over it and sue the bastards.” But real life has a tendency to make your decision a bit more complicated.
A coworker recently told me about an incident where he and another white employee were treated unfairly, by their black supervisor, in favor of a black employee. I told him that he must speak up, and that his silence only encourages more abuse. He made it very clear that what he told me was to remain between the two of us. The other employee told me nothing – though I did try to coax it out of him by way of innocent conversation. Where do each of us stand regarding this matter, and what are our choices?
If I were to inform our human resources department, or my own supervisor, about the incident, this is what would happen: There would be no action taken against said supervisor – but I would have lost my friendship with the victim for having betrayed his trust. I know this from past experience; employees live under the thumb of their supervisors. Their careers are subject to the supervisor’s whims. The supervisors are trusted completely by their bosses, to the point where each one is like a lord in his own fiefdom. Any such complaint against a supervisor would cause enmity between the employee and his boss. Thereafter, it would not be difficult for the supervisor to sabotage the employee’s career. In today’s economic climate, finding another job is much easier said than done. Therefore, employees do everything in their power to remain in the good graces of their bosses. Because of these dynamics, if I were to complain about what I heard, the victims themselves would probably not back me up; they’re too afraid of their supervisor. I would end up looking like the trouble-maker, and my own job would be in jeopardy.
I asked the man if he could even imagine a black person experiencing the same sort of discrimination and remaining silent about it. He could not, or would not, answer this question. Decades of mistreatment against whites have taught them to accept their lot as second-class citizens. They know their place in B.R.A. (black-run America).
One can hope, at least, that the two victims – both racial egalitarians – will begin to realize that today’s racial hierarchy does not work in their favor.