I identify as a racialized person in this way. First of all, the term is a label that can further dehumanize a particular group or groups. It can be said that its construct or origin has been developed and perpetuated, by those that consider themselves supreme or part of a dominant race. Though it may give language and credence to a group or groups; the word can also put the so-called “racialized” or visible minorities in a precarious and vulnerable position. It is a word that I use very conscientiously.
That being said; if this is the word of the day to which I must identify as a brown/mahogany woman, then I certainly fall into that category. I’ve experienced my share of implicit and explicit, racial bias and I certainly know what it looks like in the 21st Century, to experience economic and academic castration. Identifying with this term racialized’ isn’t just about being a visible minority. It is about academic, economic, psychological, political, institutional, interpersonal, cultural, historical, etc …
An example of Economic Castration? That would be the number of times you have to pay a bill and there’s not enough for the next bill. You may be frugal, but systemically the majority of people that encompass your family/friend dynamic, most, also don’t have enough. Why? The predatorial reality of Red Lining and Green Lining housing premiums did not afford your lineage to accrue Real Estate Wealth, but certainly Real Estate Debt. This kind of wealth is not about you putting a few dollars in the bank or not buying a pair of Jordans or a Moca Loca … whatever’ they call it, at Starbucks.
This is about coming through your generations with just a paycheck. You may be quite aware that some of your friends that identify implicitly with the dominant group; have intergenerational wealth. Lovely and caring people, having the privilege of carrying over aunty or grandma’s financial ‘nest egg’ … yes.’ This affords them a house and a car and a little something to pay bills and then some. The so-called ‘racialized’ know what it is to move from paycheck to paycheck. They generate income, but not wealth. It is interesting that so-called, ‘racialized people save the most, relative to income.