The problem in prejudice begins with the power dogmas. How they are internalized on both sides is part of the problem, but those who have learned to deal with power from the weaker side know more about it than those who blindly exercise their 'privilege.' Until they know they are dealing with someone who sees them as an equal, they may exercise more caution than criticism. If we want to fix this stuff, we have to make the people in power want to get down to earth and welcome the criticism instead of complaining about being corrected and what they did not mean to do.
BINGO! My point was not that white people don't need to stand up against racism or that men shouldn't stand up against sexism, it is that all the isms have only divided us and there must be a unifying movement and not merely an "equality" movement, which is hard to gague and tends to further divide us into the groups, oppresser and opressed. Poor black people should be educated because they are human, not because their ancestors were denied education. It's not reparations to feed the hungry, it's their due as humans.
The revolution needs to be branded as an alternative to the isms, not a magnification of them. The hippies got it right on a lot of levels. There must, indeed, be a trade off for those who must willingly abandon privilege to find a way back to the community of humans. I sincerely think that's what we all want but, when pressured, people tend to revert to what is familiar. Patriarchy and anglo culture is that "safe place" for many Americans and is the misguided source of Tea Party politics, I believe.
They are white people who want to be human and want to be a society but blame government for the equality by force policies they feel divides people further from each other. What they miss is the divisions that pre-existed these laws and the current state of inequality that exists in spite of them. They miss the part that government CAN and must play in social transformation. They have no vision of peace, only bitterness and guilt.
That's where I differ from Kerry and the lot, for those who think we are philosophical allies, I'm not speaking from a place of defensiveness. I just want to achieve the goal. I don't think we can do that if there isn't some path to redemption for those on top and those on the bottom.