A black British reporter explores white, working class America

Gary Younge’s report in the Guardian is remarkably incisive, offering a view of American racial politics and modern economics at a remove from being American. A British black man, Younge sets out to reverse the common trope of white journalists reporting on black America.

Whiteness is all some Americans feel they have left, he says, but the fact they don’t have it as bad as black or Latino Americans is cold comfort.

The whole thing is worth a read, but this quote is quite insightful:

“Nobody speaks up for the poor,” said Jamie Walsh, a white working-class woman who grew up in Muncie, explaining Trump’s appeal to those she grew up with on Muncie’s Southside. “There is systemic racism, but black people have advocates. Poor white people don’t. They’re afraid. They’re afraid that they’re stupid. They don’t feel racist, they don’t feel sexist, they don’t want to offend people or say the wrong thing. But white privilege is like a blessing and a curse if you’re poor. The whole idea pisses poor white people off because they’ve never experienced it on a level that they understand.”

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