Sometimes I try to put myself into the position of the person who doesn’t see the extent to which white supremacy is embedded into the US past and present, and if this current administration has anything to do with it, well into the future. I try to see what they see, or don’t see, and it makes me feel slightly helpless, as how can we prove to these people that they are continuing to allow hate to be perpetuated through their society, just by not seeing it happen right in front of their noses. Maybe, just maybe, if they read this book they would have a better idea of why silence is complicity.
American Hate is a collection of testimonials from people who have been affected by prejudice, racism, hate, mainly around and after the 2016 election. Arjun Singh Sethi has collected stories from a variety of voices: undocumented people, POC, disabled, transgender, queer, Muslim, Sikh, Jewish, and so on, and lets them tell their stories in their own words. Some of these stories made national headlines, others you may never have heard about before, but they all must be heard, and they are all extremely shocking, and may also be triggering for many.
Arjun Singh Sethi provides an excellent foreword and afterword with information on how we can make positive change with resistance and our voices and actions, as well as how we can be allies, and/or protect ourselves, depending on our situation. We are currently in a country where white supremacy, oppression, and hatred are the main course for those in power, and while they feed on these evils, more and more people are suffering in private and in public from their legacy. These are the testimonials that need a spotlight on them, and need to be shoved in people’s faces until they understand that dismissal and non-reaction to hatred is a huge part of the problem.
We must never let these voices be silenced. Thanks to The New Press and Netgalley for the advance copy of this book!