White women’s tears is one of the main ways White American women have of derailing any talk of racism, particularly their own racism. It is part of a more general pattern of white people making their feelings matter more than the truth – something you see too in the tone argument, for example.
White women’s tears can come about in different ways, but here is the classic scene:
- A white woman says something racist.
- A black woman points it out. (It could be any person of colour but it works best against black women for reasons given below.)
- The white woman says she is not racist and starts crying.
- For added effect the white woman can run out of the room.
- Other whites, particularly white men, come to the aid and comfort not of the wronged black woman but of the racist white woman!
- The black woman, the wronged…
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