Race: September 2007 Archives

White Non-Welcome

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Jae Ran Kim writes about why she doesn't feel welcomed among groups of white moms. Some of this may well be bias against newcomers (despite official views that newcomes are welcomed) rather than racial bias. After all, white newcomers often experience the same sort of thing. I've certainly seen it happen many times among people who officially want to welcome and accept new people but are not comfortable doing so when they've already got their friends. But I doubt it all is that, since many people are a little intimidating by the prospect of doing all the work to initiate relationships across racial lines (particularly with certain racial groups).

But whether it is actual racial bias or just perceived racial bias isn't really the point. If it can even come across as racial bias, and it shouldn't be there to begin with, it's worth taking stock of that and seeking to avoid sending such signals.

Christians should pay special attention to her advice to those who say they want to reach out to non-whites but can't seem to do so successfully. I know a lot of congregations and Christian ministries that say such things without, to my mind, having a clue that many of the people they're trying to reach out to have exactly the kind of response she's describing here.

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