Your survival has never depended on your knowledge of white culture. In fact, it’s required your ignorance.
Why do I know white culture so well? Because I’m a black woman. And while I, and just about any person of color who has spent their lives in a white supremacist society, know enough about white culture to write a book or two on whiteness and option the bestseller movie rights, y’all know almost nothing about us and even less about yourselves.
Why? Because you don’t have to.
I had to learn to talk to my white teachers in a way that didn’t seem “too boisterous,” and I learned why enthusiasm would be disruptive from me yet welcomed by white boys. I had to learn what level of eye contact with cops seemed respectful, what seemed evasive, and what seemed challenging. I had to learn why clerks in the grocery store were following me. I had to learn why the same white people who clutch their purse around me when they have a coin will come running to me for help when they don’t.
And as much as I’d like you to see me — as much as I’d like systemic racism to simply be a problem of different groups not seeing each other — I need you to see yourself, really see yourself, first. This is the top priority.