Whites should demonstrate that their silence in the drug war cannot be bought by tacit assurances that their sons and daughters will not be rounded up en masse and locked away. Whites should prove their commitment to dismantling not only mass incarceration, but all of the structures of racial inequality that guarantee for whites the resilience of white privilege.
After all why should “we” give up our racial bribes if whites have been unwilling to give up theirs? In light of our nation`s history, that seems profoundly unfair. But if your strategy for racial justice involves waiting for whites to be fair, history suggests it will be a long wait.
It`s not that white people are more unjust than others. Rather it seems that an aspect of human nature is the tendency to cling tightly to one`s advantages and privilege`s and to rationalize the suffering and exclusion of others.
This tendency is what led Frederick Douglass to declare that “power concedes nothing without a demand; it never has and never will.” (244)