Hi Jessica Bordelon Mashael, thanks so much for reading, and for sharing your words as well!
You’re spot on about white ppl who feel the need to interject their experience/personal truth/opinion/viewpoint into conversations where they shouldn’t be in the first place. I see this all the time too, and even worse, I realize I used to engage in the exact same behavior — without even realizing!
And yes, I agree that “intention” is the key factor here — key, in that, it’s not relevant. At all.
We should always defer to the minority in the room, and conversations/opportunities should benefit (or be centered around) the marginalized people before everyone else.
I think the majority of white folks don’t see themselves at all as “racist,” but they also don’t bother trying to find out how they might inadvertently be benefitting from systemic racism, or perpetuating racist myths, tropes, and beliefs that still end up having real world consequences for POC.
You’ve covered all the important points about whitesplaining perfectly. I’d only add that there are ways in which white people participate in, and or benefit from systemic racism, often, without even knowing. I covered that in detail in a separate piece with various examples: The Kind of Racism You Don’t Even Know You Have.
Thanks again for reading and responding, and thanks for doing your part in this important, necessary, and difficult work.