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The Possessive Investment of Whiteness

            "Race is a cultural construct, but one with deadly social causes and consequences."(Lipsitz 2) In his book, "The Possessive Investment in Whiteness: How White People Profit From Identity Politics," George Lipsitz argues that it is in the best interest of white Americans to "invest in whiteness, to remain true to an identity that provides them with resources, power, and opportunity." (Lipsitz vii) " Lipsitz's book gives a substantial amount of evidence which shows that America's investment in whiteness with historical facts, stories, and statistics. Although at times Lipsitz's arguments are biased and hard to reference, because overall he gives competent, emotional, and logical evidence, it does not deter from his main argument that Americans have an investment in whiteness, and he strongly asserts that its the duty of every person of color to take action to rid of this investment.
             In his book, Lipsitz states that "[w]hiteness is everywhere in U.S. culture, but it is very hard to see (Lipsitz 1)." A major factor as to why Lipsitz wrote this book was due to the events surrounding Bill Moore's death when Lipsitz was a youth. Bill Moore was a white man in the 1963 who, distressed by the racial violence in Mississippi, went on a one man march from Chattanooga, Tennessee, to Jackson, Mississippi to deliver a letter to Governor Barnett. During his march, he was threatened and murdered. "Investigators found fifty-one dollars in Moore's pocket and a diary among possessions." In a final entry he wrote that "a couple of men who had talked to me before, drove up and questioned my religious and political beliefs and was sure I'd e killed for them."(Lipsitz x) " The suspected killer of Bill Moore, Floyd L. Simpson was not indicted, nor was anyone else indicted for Bill Moore's death. Lipsitz admits that "the murder of Bill Moore did affect [him] to an unusual degree, even more than the many reports of the deaths of dozens of blacks in the civil rights struggle.

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