Someone recently defended white nationalists at Charlottesville by claiming they do not want to hurt people of other races, they just want a section of the US to be whites only to advocate for their own interests because they think their heritage as white Americans is under attack. They think progressives are trying to make white Americans a minority in America. Even if it’s true that white nationalists don’t want to hurt people of other races (I’m not convinced), it’s important to understand how they arrive at their “white only solution” for their paranoid fear. Why do they see the gains of others as a threatening loss for themselves? Why do they think being a minority is unacceptable? Could it be they assume the way they have treated minorities will be the treatment they receive? Paranoid fear and tribal mentality rarely involve rational thinking. White nationalist, KKK, pro-Nazi, white supremacist, theocratic, and Christian dominionist ideologies are dangerous and destructive. We need to promote healthier, more rational ways to calm irrational fear. As Abraham Lincoln said, “Do I not destroy my enemies when I make them my friends?”
Although we humans evolved in tribes and have difficulty overcoming tribal mentality, we CAN learn to view humanity as one race. A good start is the perspective of Carl Sagan in his essay “Pale Blue Dot” written for a photograph taken in 1990 by the Voyager 1 space probe 3.7 billion miles from earth. The path to a better world is not through anyone’s paranoid fears. It is through an enlightened view of humanity as one interdependent clan.