Children of Titans: Privileged People of Color and Our Place in the Struggle for Justice

Chaos on Olympus
Painting by Francisco Bayeu y Subías

White collars on brown skin. We are children of two worlds, adoptees of the west with our roots elsewhere. We are the bearers of hyphenated identities, fickle badges of honorary whiteness, and the guilt of the ones who made it out. We choke on the myth of the model minority, the Othering we suffer scars our souls, and we suffocate from the unacceptance we feel from all sides. In order to survive, some of us let go of our language, our history, our heritage, only to be met with scorn. Some of us struggle to find our way back, only to discover, often, there is no “back” to be had. We are lost between two worlds. We reside in the orbit of power, but it burns.

We are often encouraged to use our lingual privilege, “cultural awareness,” and international networks to further elevate us into echelons of international business, strengthen the powers that be, and to lay low and be grateful, to grovel for what we have been given. Don’t think too much about how what you are given has everything and nothing to do with who you are. We can be the diversity quotas, the black friend, the ones who never rock the boat. But do not be lulled into the lie that your obedience will buy your safety, for deities are capricious.

Be not a satellite for a sun that loves you not. Capitalism and colonialism, the mother and father of our circumstance, these titans which brought worlds together while tearing communities apart, in birthing us, inevitably gave us the tools to fight back. We can instead choose to use what has been given to turn away from the cultural imperialism which kills fast and slow. Use your language to connect the isolated, your privilege to fight for fairness, your strength for justice. For that, we must relearn our lost tongues, our forgotten histories. Relearn the old, wield the new. Fight.

We, these children of titans, seek to destroy these forces of globalization and oppression which created us. It is an everyday battle, with little glory to speak of. But we are here.