(Salon) -- Dear White America,
I am your friend. I have written several letters of this type to you before. It pains me to have to do so again. What I am going to share in this letter may be commonsense for many white brothers and sisters. Other White Americans may be surprised. Because our society is so segregated, people of color often do not have many opportunities to talk with white people in a direct way regarding our sincere worries about the problems in your community. I hope that this open letter can be part of a broader conversation in that regard.
When a person suffers from chronic pain they often find ways to compensate for it. Some people self-medicate with drugs or alcohol. Others develop the mental discipline necessary to compartmentalize their physical suffering. Others cocoon themselves in a bubble of denial. Because I am your friend, I am going to be honest with you. White America is suffering from a type of cancer. It is hurting you; it is killing your children; it is damaging families; it hurls shrapnel in many directions, maiming and otherwise bringing an end to the lives of those people who are unfortunate enough to be in its blast radius. If you want the truth, this is it: toxic white masculinity, and the backward right-wing politics which nurture and protect it, are hurting millions of you every year.
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