What Do You Know About White People?

We talk a lot about diversity, in HR, and we have all sorts of programs and measurements in place. Many businesses are even subject to Affirmative Action Reporting, where you have to declare to the federal government the racial and gender makeup of your staff.As a result, many businesses proudly proclaim that not only are they Equal Opportunity Employers but that they are sensitive to all different cultures.

But, just a question: What do you know about the average white American? Is this an important group? You bet. If you want your product to sell well, you’ll need to market properly and design products that appeal to this group as well as other groups. If you’re white yourself, you may assume you understand what the average white American is thinking, but you may not. You may live in a bubble.

Political Scientist, Dr. Charles Murray, studies white America and the concept of bubbles-how people are insulated from groups other than their own. He found that if you live in certain zip codes, you’re very likely to be a born and raised bubble person without much contact with the average white American. Did you grow up in New York City? San Francisco? Silicon Valley? You’re likely very “bubbled.”

To keep reading, click here: What Do You Know About White People?

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10 thoughts on “What Do You Know About White People?

  1. I’m White, but grew up extremely poor, living in the Projects, wearing hand-me-down clothing from my older sisters, with no TV or bicycle — or other so-called “normal” accoutrements of childhood, and so forth. My family received welfare, food commodities (later, food stamps), Medicaid, etc. Fortunately, my family made great sacrifices to see that I got the best education possible, and I am no longer poor. But my background taught me that a lot of differences that people attribute to race are actually functions of social class or other cultural factors.

    1. My family was not poor, but we certainly were not rich (my dad was career military) and not connected in any way. I watch in awe as my friends’ college-age children easily get internships and jobs in popular fields just because their parents are friends with each other.

      I have also been amazed – and disgusted – at the attitudes some friends from grad school and professional areas have had about the military. They have never known anyone who joined the military and they think that people in the military are there because they are just too stupid to do anything else. They grew up in upper middle class bubbles and don’t even know it.

  2. FYI it looks like there’s a typo (or Freudian slip) in the first sentence of paragraph three. I’m thinking maybe it was supposed to say “…people are insulated from groups other than their own.”

  3. an interesting perspective on society.
    I grew up working class just above poverty (no welfare, food stamps), lots of work early in life, did not understand we were “poor” until I was sent to the advanced city grade school with kids drawn from across all groups, classes, religons.
    It took years to appreciate I could accept everyone having different, strongly held truths; and others could not understand how.
    ps a 57.

  4. I grew up very affluent on Long Island. My mother came from the poor the East End of London – I spent lots of time there with my grandparents growing up in the 1970s when it was just poor – no artists, not an ‘interesting’ area.

    We traveled a lot going to all sorts of places and I mixed with people from all walks of life – from my father’s swanky club in Paris to as a child taking the subway with my mother to the Loehmann’s in the Bronx … in the 1970s. Some would have considered that unsafe – but we never felt it an issue.

    Best Thing Ever. I am so grateful to my parents for this. Inoculated me against fear of ‘other’ and helped me feel I can be comfortable with most people – even if we’re not going to be BFFs.

    Mind you, as a child I was always gregarious and traveled hopefully. My husband was a very fearful child – for him the world was a scary place. My childhood wouldn’t have worked at all for him.

  5. “Seriously?” and “pete” are probably pretty bubbled themselves. They provided links to partisan political sites that double down on political correctness whenever their bubbled viewpoints are challenged.

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