One of the main goals that white people have is to make sure that no one thinks they are racist. Some white people take more offense to being called racist, than minorities do to racial slurs. One of the best ways to not be perceived as a racist, is to have at more than one friend who is a minority.
By having more than one minority friend you have given yourself a license to say racist things (usually in the form of “jokes”) and not feel bad. You know you shouldn’t feel bad because you’re not actually racist, but society needs more proof.
Not being racist use to be like going to Harvard. Everyone you met would know about it because you’d find a clever way to pepper it into every conversation. Times have changed, and in order to not be racist, you have to go out of your way to make friends with someone who isn’t white. Which is not that hard.
Fun stereotype about minorities, they’re super friendly. That’s why America loves immigrants. If you’re a little shy about offending a minority-friend-prospect just remember, imitation is highest form of flattery.
If your friend is Black, change your colloquialisms to emulate what black people say on TV and in music. If your friend is Indian talk to them about bargaining and tech support. If your friend is Muslim ask them what country their family is from, and show off your cultural intelligence by letting them know that Islam is a religion not an ethnic back ground. Gain extra points by letting your Muslim friend know that you do not think they are a terrorist.
SIDE NOTE: Make sure they’re not a terrorist though.
The first way to make your minority friend feel welcome is by learning about their culture. Instead of wasting your time reading about their culture, just ask them a bunch of questions in rapid fire format. Make sure to smile when you make broad generalizations about their culture, that way when you’re dead-fucking-wrong, they’ll think you’re joking. If they have food restrictions, ask them about the restrictions. Odds are, no one has ever asked them about their restrictions, because before they met you, they only hung out with other minorities.
For example. If they do not eat pork, make sure to ask them about bacon. Even though bacon comes from a pig, it is clearly not pork because it’s fucking delicious. If they still say no, do your best to sell them on why they should eat pork or at least bacon. Tell them how amazing it is, and how you couldn’t live in a world where you can’t eat pork. After spending sufficient time explaining how amazing pork is, tell your minority friend that you respect their culture and that you think it’s cool that they don’t eat pork.
Be honest with your minority friend. Let them know that even though your family members or friends are a little racist, that you, are not like that. Prove that you are not racist by giving them several anecdotes about times in your life where you stood up against your racist friends and family members. At the same time, let your friend know that even though your friends and family may be a little racist, that they are still good people. Alternatively, tell your friend stories that may be perceived as racist, then explain to them why it’s not actually racist. The easiest way is by comparing the story to something that is far worse. For example
“My dad called the cops on a 14 year old black kid once, he thought he was being robbed when the kid asked if my dad needed help changing his flat tire. I know that’s bad, but one guy from my neighborhood is in prison after committing a hate crime.”
Think about it logically, a cop won’t pull you over for going 90 if a guy zooms by you going 110.
In part 2 we’ll go over how to act around your minority friend in social settings.