I’d never heard of Tim Wise until today. I was actually watching a short talk by bell hooks when this video caught my eye on the side of my YouTube screen. Here, Wise discusses how the lower classes has been historically divided by race to work against each other rather than with one another to come up and fight against their oppressors.
A quick Google search shows me Wise has been an anti-racism activist for a long time, although he’s also gotten flack for not always checking his privilege himself. That he isn’t perfect isn’t surprising, but I don’t think it takes away from his original point in this talk, or from a lot of the work that he’s done. If anyone knows more about Wise they’d like to share with me, feel free to comment. I found his comments on the situation in post-Katrina New Orleans between the Lower 9th Ward and Chaumet/St. Bernard Parish to be especially interesting. Would love to hear from some of my friends and acquaintances in NOLA about their thoughts on this.
If you’re interested in hearing a little more from Mr. Wise, check out this interview with him on Totally Biased.