A podcast where a straight white man listens to people from different walks of life

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/01/26/a-podcast-where-a-straight-whi.html


I’m going to circle back to this one in a whilst.


Intriguing indeed. Peeps of Privilege certainly should listen more.

In a similar vein, I’ve been listening to this very good “Seeing White” series.

  1. Interesting idea. I hope we get some good insights from this and some non SWM folks feel heard.

  2. That seating really sucks for a conversation like that. Big comfy chairs at a right angle would work much better.

EDIT: I just realized he’s traveling to meet these folks rather than having them in an “interview” space.

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This seems really sympathetic. Him actually sitting there and doing more listening than talking, especially in the first video, felt surprisingly… good? I don’t quite know how to put it. It just felt almost transgressive - the good kind, the one where you feel, dang, we shoulda broken with this shitty old thing way earlier.


In a day and age where the endless self-centred “enough about me, what do YOU think of me?” thinky pieces are finally starting to wear thin, thank God a straight white man has the wherewithal to ask: “enough about you, what do I think of you?”


Hasn’t Ira Glass been doing this for twenty years?

Not that I feel that there is a dearth of straight white men or people with interesting stories and perspectives to whom they might listen. More, the merrier!

I think his heart is in the right place, but lets look at this logically.

Let’s say you have a spectrum where on one end, you have the most racist person in the world, and on the other is the least racist person in the world.

The least racist person in the world wouldn’t concern themselves at all with what “race” someone belongs to. The most racist person, is very concerned with what race a person belongs to, probably above all other defining attributes. To win the fight against racism, we need to acknowledge racism and also not treat race as an important defining characteristic.

The unintentional implication of this podcast is that it’s a special thing to be heard by a people with a certain skin pigmentation.

Oh, you mean reverse racism! Yeah, it’s not a thing. Stop trying to make it a thing.


I don’t mean that at all, it’s entirely non-partisan. The more racist you are, the more you care about what race someone belongs to. Even through “race” isn’t a physical thing, but a sociological construct. It’s time to put that behind us, and shun racists instead of continuing to draw lines.

Not everyone in America is on the same page that race is a social construct, though. And we can’t get to the point of understanding that more broadly as a country, if we don’t talk about both how race was constructed over time and give people who have historical not been given an opportunity to talk about themselves, their lives, and the impact of categories like race or gender that have been imposed on them. Talking about race (and gender, etc) actually can help us to make it that Roddenberrian utopia where we don’t have to talk about race, except as a historical reality long in the past. We don’t get there by ignoring the realities of those sociological constructs in the present though.


That’s right, not everyone is on the same page, and I think it’s because there’s been a lot of misinformation. I think it makes it more difficult for us to spread the message that race isn’t what people think it is, while some who are concerned with the issue continue to draw lines.

“Here is a special podcast, where I, a white person, will listen to you, a non-white person.”

I doubt we’re going to agree on what kind of message that sends, but I think it’s less constructive than it first appears. Have a good one.

What, America isn’t a post-racial society? I thought the election of Obama marked an end to all that past unpleasantness and any need to dwell on it further.


That may well be true. However, not talking about race is a hardly a solution either.

You have a good day as well.


Just forget history- better yet - erase it.


here’s what i’m hearing in your argument-- people of color who are routinely oppressed by the racist society in which they live along with the whites who are close friends with or married to people of color who are also directly impacted by the racist society in which they live should just all stop talking about the oppressive racist society in which they live because that is the one thing which will make it wither and fade away.

if that is not a fair summary of what you’re trying to say then please clarify it to the extent that i can differentiate your position with the one i just described.


I’m tempted to say that’s fullcircling Trump, but then again I hate to bring that guy up again and choose not to do a gif of least racist guy you ever interviewed, you ever met.

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I didn’t say anything about ignoring racism. I said exactly the opposite.

A truly unracist attitude is one that sees racism as a very real problem, and race as a harmful fabrication.

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