The NY Times 'Discovers' That Blacks Were Lynched...But Doesn't Name White People as the Killers
By Chauncey DeVega
As such, there are no "white criminals" or "white terrorists." There are only individual white people who happen to be criminals or killers. In a society organized around white privilege, it is only the Other, in particular black people and "Muslims," who are labeled en masse as "pathological" and/or where individuals are subjected to group stigma and punishment.
The racial erasure in the Times' lynching story is also a surrender to what researcher Robin DiAngelo has termed "white fragility":
These moves include the outward display of emotions such as anger, fear, and guilt, and behaviors such as argumentation, silence, and leaving the stress-inducing situation. These behaviors, in turn, function to reinstate white racial equilibrium.
Through that process, the black or brown truth-teller is transformed by the White gaze into someone who is "angry," "hostile," "emotional," "crazy," "irrational" or "overreacting."
Ultimately, the white racial frame is a type of racial narcissism, one that for those white people who have not renounced their personal and psychological investment in Whiteness and white supremacy transforms the rational into the irrational, the sane into the insane, and warps the morals and ethics of its owners.
As I, and those others, who dared to connect the barbarism of ISIS and the spectacular lynchings and burning alive murders of black Americans by whites recently learned, forcing White America to own its history of racial terrorism is not a popular act.
By Jenée Desmond-Harris
That's why, even if "white" was omitted unconsciously by writers and editors who truly wanted to do justice to the lynching report, it's still troubling because it obscures a key part of how racism works. When we're talking about the ways black Americans were terrorized by these horrific lynchings, it's also relevant to note that white Americans were doing the terrorizing.