Northwestern University journalist says even the way white people walk on sidewalks is racist

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Northwestern University’s student newspaper recently published an article that reportedly asserted that “white people walk awkwardly on sidewalks” because of “internalized racism,” according to a Wednesday report from
Campus Reform.

What are the details?

Opinion editor Kenny Allen wrote the Daily Northwestern article, “Are the sidewalks at Northwestern too white, too?” which asked if white people walked on sidewalks certain ways because of racism.

“When I first got to Northwestern, I wondered why walking around on campus could be so frustrating,” he wrote. “Even when sidewalks were relatively empty, I would often have to walk way around people to pass without bumping into them.”

“At first,” he reasoned, “I chalked it up to the geographic diversity of the school; maybe the people that came to this school were used to different ways of moving through a public place.”

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After discussing the problem with his other black friends, Allen said, he concluded that “people at this predominantly white school would not move out of our way on the sidewalk.”

Pointing to University of Richmond sociologist Bedelia Richards’ test to determine whether college campuses are racist, Allen concluded that internalized racism is what prompts white people to walk on sidewalks the way that they do in places such as Northwestern University.

Allen explained that such conclusions were connected to Jim Crow segregation laws.

“That social order required black people to yield to white people whenever possible,” he wrote. “Black people were made to show deference to white people anytime they interacted. One of the ways they were made to do so was by stepping off the sidewalk when a white person was walking past. The informal rules are passed down through generations just like any other kind of etiquette.

“White people came to expect the right of way in public spaces,” he continued. “White people who were accustomed to moving through the world like that — intentionally or not — taught their kids to move through the world in the same way. And the racism that undergirded Jim Crow wasn’t eliminated just because the laws were no longer overtly racist.”

What’s next?

Allen concluded that it is this very practice that ought to prompt people to become more serious about “uprooting … white supremacy.”

“Many White people walk around campus having unknowingly absorbed this particular facet of white supremacy, and the leaders of the institution do little to make us believe that white supremacy is something worth challenging in the first place,” he insisted.

“Uprooting that white supremacy requires both recognizing its scale and disrupting it however it shows up,” he added — even if it shows up on the sidewalk next to you.

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25 Comments

  1. What a bunch of B.S.! Any group of people walking down a sidewalk side by side, just by its very nature, requires people who come upon them to walk around them. It doesn’t make sense for any single individual — regardless of race — to attempt to walk through a group of people commanding the right of way. That is illogical, that is rude, and that shows a lack of respect for anyone in that group of walkers. Countless times I (a white person) have yielded the sidewalk to people of various ethnic backgrounds simply because it would be stupid to push through them. I call B.S. on this article.

    1. It is rude for those in the group not to step aside to let a person pass. The group does NOT have the privilege of owning the entire public walkway. Manners involve having consideration for others.

  2. The BS just keeps getting deeper.
    Spock: “The Needs of the Many Outweigh the Needs of the Few”

  3. What a bunch of poppy cock? What he states may just be true. But to call someone Racist because of what went on years ago is BULL. This guy sounds like the real Racist hear. Coming up with anything just to play the race card. Did these groups of white Racists make you step off the sidewalk? If not ,then I stand behind, he is the Racists. If they did, then I APOLOGIZE, he was correct these people are Racists.

  4. Racism is being caused by the blacks with their stupid BS, I never felt the way I do now about blacks till Obama the illegal was put into office. They are causing all the hatred against themselves and will not get better with Joe and the Ho in office. The black organizations are only making it worse, sooner or later this racist plan will burst and all hell will break loose.

  5. “After discussing the problem with his other black friends, Allen said, he concluded that “people at this predominantly white school would not move out of our way on the sidewalk.”

    And here is where the problem is owed to. You ain’t black unless you get outa the way of someone else! I bet the so-called journalist didn’t think it was not the person that they thought was in their ways problem, but the jack ass that was too impatient to just pass people walking too slow for them!
    Rude people like the so-called journalist are the problem! period.

  6. There is an old saying “opinions are like a–holes everyone has one” and this guy expressed his but he is the school paper’s opinion editor, Iall I can say is they have low expectations for this position, there is dumb, then there is dumber and he is the dumbest.

  7. The party of the KKK, school segregation, and slavery, feel so guilty they try to blame the party that freed the slaves, destroyed the KKK and intergrated the schools.IE Trumps party.

  8. But when I partially yield when passing a black person I’m considered to be a racist for stepping away from them. It’s another no-win situation.

    And most people on campuses block the sidewalks because they are staring at their phones, not because of racism.

  9. Ok so when I have walked down the sidewalks in different cities and had to go out of my way to avoid running into people, that felt they needed to walk down the middle of the sidewalk instead of sharing it and in some cases ran right into me even as I was moving over to give them space, I am a the racist. These people have been of different races and nationalities to the best I could tell but what was common was most were just much younger than I am and obviously just being part of a disrespectful generation that has not been brought up to show respect to others. Now this is just my opinion. A lot of young folks these days just act like only they matter.

  10. 20 years ago I was coaching football and one of my players took a football that wasn’t his from another player. I asked the first player why he took the ball that wasn’t his from the rightful owner. His comment made me shocked. He said that his mother told him that he was black and blacks just take what they want whenever they want no matter who owns it. Maybe his mother taught him that or maybe he just misunderstood his mother. I think that racism and race supremacy isn’t just from one race. If a white person leaves the sidewalk to walk around a black person it’s because of racist fear, if a white person doesn’t move out of the way it’s because of racism. No matter what only one side is wrong.

  11. That’s everywhere, not just “white colleges”. People simply don’t move. Period. There was a time people would make room for others, but those days are long gone. I’ve seen the same thing happen down in the “multi-cultural” district which is well, gee, dominantly Asian, ie not White. People expect everyone ELSE to move. So its not a “white” thing, its a human thing. Not a good thing, but its a human thing.

  12. I immediately could tell that Mr. Kenny Allen is a racist. Mr. Kenny’s conclusion speaks volumes on his ignorance. How did Mr. Allen pass entrance exams for Northwestern University? He, I’m pretty sure, doesn’t know a damn thing about “Jim Crow” other than hearing race-baiters (Obama, Biden, etc.) use the phrase to cause friction in recent years. In short, I’d give Kenny Allen a “F” on his critique of sidewalks being racist. What a bunch of cramp from a cry baby!

  13. Wow! You need to get off the Liberal campus and explore the country. At least decent people walk on the sidewalk, In Nashville and several other cities I have lived and visted, a certain sect of people walk down the middle of the street expecting traffic to give way. Same way with the roving thugs that ride in packs of hundreds on not street legal and unlicensed ATV’s and motorcycles taunting the police and blocking roads and even interstates.. I can personally say that my equipment trailer has one notch in it from a captain thugalot who was traffic light colorblind. Did I stop? Nope! Him and his bretheren didn’t relized that a 20000 lb truck and trailer does not stop on a dime nore will I risk crashing over a lawless punk so I can be gang jumped for there ignorance.

  14. This proves if you’re prejudiced and full of hatred all you will see is prejudice and hatred, In everything that you see in do.

  15. I will bet money this person hasn’t spent much time in a large east coast city where everybody walks boldly out of general preservation in crowds. Of course, people like that display the worst kind of racism by INSISTING someone else is racist. But it fits with the Democrats accusing the GOP of trying to manipulate elections when that is precisely what the Dems are attempting to “legalize” with that reeking H.H./S. 1.
    I wonder how that person walks on a sidewalk, in the Barry bow, I mean Barak Bow.

  16. this journalist is totally stupid and is probably a dumbass racists himself he needs to find a new life

  17. The claim that white people at Northwestern University do not move off a sidewalk for black people as a result of being used to Jim Crow laws is patently ridiculous. Most people, white, black, brown, red, yellow, blue, green, and etc., found on college campuses were not alive when Jim Crow laws were around. Additionally Illinois is not a southern state so the offensive laws were never in effect there.
    The failure to yield right of way may be due to a lack of social grace, out of ignorance, or just plain rude but it is not attributable to racism.

  18. Democrat talking points .victim mentality.poor poor pitiful me..no doubt who is the racist here.maybe he should have asked some of his white friend but I bet he doesn’t have any

  19. I wonder how Kenny feels about BET and the black business expos held acroas the country?

    The other day there was some racist people walkong towards me, 2 hispanics and a caucasian guy. They were walking three across and didn’t move. I thought, how racist of them to not allow room for someone else. So I walked straight at them. They still didn’t separate. Unfortunately one of the racists took my shoulder to his chest like an nhl check. Surprisingly, they all became angry. I laughed and thought how racist of them to think they owned the sidewalk and didn’t need to have any consideration for someone else.

  20. It appears to me that “Opinion editor Kenny Allen” is a very racist black moron looking for a problem to create! Has he ever observed the way black people stand in the way in store isles or on the sidewalks or has he lived his short life with racist blinders on. If I had a dollar for every time I had to step around or go out of my way to get past groups of black’s I would be a rich man. What a petty subject to raise a protest over. He doesn’t even realize just how racist his objections sound. If that is his worst problem in life he will be doing excellent. What a Maroon!!!

  21. An article on how all people, young and old, are self absorbed and lack common courtesy, would have garnered much fewer views and zero interest. Attach the word “racist” and viola! You get national attention. As a 54 year old, it was my distinct white privilege to be taught common courtesy by my liberal white parents in the 1970’s and 80’s. Over the years I have noticed a growing lack of common sense and common courtesy from all races. Meanwhile the planet has become much more populous, and crowded. Perhaps what is needed are wider sidewalks and less self absorbed people in general.

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