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MTV's new documentary White People is starting an important discussion

In case you missed it, last night MTV aired their newest documentary, White People. The hour-long special, hosted by Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and filmmaker Jose Antonio Vargas, set out to find the answer to the question, “What does it mean to be white?” While discussions of race in America seem to occur only between nonwhite individuals, Vargas looked to young white Americans to see how they felt about the sensitive subject.

In the documentary, Vargas and the participants delve into what it really means to be privileged because of the color of your skin. Whether you live in an all-white community or have grown up in an incredibly diverse neighborhood, White People shows us the importance of being aware of and acknowledging the community you live in and, most importantly, talking about race

Since it aired, the film has gotten some backlash for “being too gentle” when it comes to talking about race—alternately, it's also faced criticism for being “white shaming.” And while the criticisms that come from both white and non-white viewers are totally valid, we think that the film still accomplishes what it’s set out to do: get people talkingWhite People isn’t trying to solve America’s racial issue in a single hour, but instead give us a glimpse of how we can change the way we view race by being more thoughtful in our daily lives and starting the discussion.

Did you watch MTV's White People? How does your race affect your daily life? Tell us about your experiences talking about race in the comments below, and check out the full documentary for free on YouTube.

Photo credit: MTV


by Mallory Walker | 2/1/2016