UC Davis and the Racialized Politics of Sentimentality

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1 Response to UC Davis and the Racialized Politics of Sentimentality

  1. There is no doubt that white America rides on a giant pillow of racial privilege, one aspect of which is a naive faith in the disinterestedness of the police.

    What has happened here at Davis is interesting precisely because it places the white faith in the police in conflict with an equally powerful belief that white bodies must be inviolable. White cops abusing white bodies creates a form of cognitive dissonance that, because of historical and ingrained racism, is never reflected in the media when the victims of police brutality are brown.

    Yes, the notoriety of the pepper spray incident does attest to deep-seated American racial narratives. It might also be viewed as a moment in which the monolithic quality of whiteness as a category is diminishing. With every All-American mug they douse with capsaicin, the police are shaking free a few potential allies of those who because of their ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, or other characteristic have long seen the police more clearly as an instrument of repression rather than protection.

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