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Isaiah Hines

Isaiah Hines

Isaiah Hines is an 18 year-old student from South Burlington in the state of Vermont whose photo of himself presenting one of his scholarly presentations about White people went viral. [1]

Personal Life and Activities

Clip of Hines where he talks to students during a discussion.

Clip of Hines where he talks to students during a discussion.

Isaiah was born and raised in the United States East Coast at the city of South Burlington. [undefined]

He attended South Burlington High School where he was incredibly active as a student

and in his extra curricular activities.

[undefined] [undefined]

White People Are Fragile

Photo of Hines when he presented his project about "White Fragility".

Photo of Hines when he presented his project about "White Fragility".

In late May, 2017, a photo of Isaiah which was taken when he was a Junior in high school began trending in a Facebook group called "Rebel Alliance", which confused a number of the members who felt offended about what his project may entail. [undefined] The title of his presentation for his Advanced Placement Psychology class is: "White People are Fragile". [undefined] To clear up the confusion, Isaiah took to his own Facebook to properly summarize a bit about his project and the concept of "White Fragility" in Psychology.

From His Facebook post [undefined]:

It’s come to my attention that this image is circulating the “Rebel Alliance” Facebook page and is generating quite a bit of confusion.

Just wanted to clear up a few things.

This is a picture of me, one year ago, giving my final presentation for my AP Psychology class.

For this project, we were allowed to choose any psychology-related concept to research and present to the class.

I chose ‘white fragility’.

I stand by my presentation and the concept of white fragility and here’s why.

White fragility is a term coined by Westfield State University professor Robin Photo of Hines when he presented his project about "White Fragility".


It refers to a mental state in which even a minimum amount of racial stress becomes intolerable, triggering a range of defensive actions and biological responses.

It is a well-documented psychological phenomenon and it was entirely appropriate for the assignment.

My psychology teacher also fully approved of the presentation.

Part of why white fragility occurs is because we are falsely taught that racism is an issue solely of moral and immoral people rather than an issue deeply embedded in our nation's systems and institutions.

We often misunderstand racism as consisting only of easily identifiable singular acts such as racial slurs, hate crimes, etc. This means that people believe if they are a good person with good morals, they are incapable of being racist.

So, when white people are called out for saying or doing something racially insensitive, they believe they are being called an immoral, bad person.

This explains much of the defensiveness.

In truth, as Americans, we are raised in a racist society that exists as a result of our extensive and violent history of race-based oppression.

We are all socialized to have racist biases and tendencies.

Saying and doing racist things by mistake does not automatically make you a bad person.

Everyone will make these mistakes at some point.

Instead of seeing getting called out as a personal attack on your character, I encourage people to try to see it as an opportunity to learn and grow.

The reason it is so important to understand this concept is that it can be a HUGE barrier to having effective conversations on race and racism.

White fragility allows white people not to be held accountable for their words and actions, it allows white people to govern when and how racism is discussed, and it reinforces racial power dynamics, thus upholding the white supremacy within our society.

I did find it just a little funny how many of the people responding to this image with anger or indignation are actually displaying the psychological concept in action!

It is absolutely possible to break the cycle and challenge or question this theory without engaging in the problematic behaviors associated with white fragility.

However, it seems many people will still surrender to white fragility and become needlessly defensive and angry rather than engaging in constructive dialogue.

I’ve attached the link to my actual presentation below.

While the powerpoint is far from perfect, I HIGHLY suggest everyone take a look!

I'm happy to respond to any questions or concerns or just further explain this concept if anyone is interested.

Just let me know!



Citation Linkfacebook.comHis personal Facebookpage.
May 30, 2017, 2:05 AM
Citation Linktwitter.comThe Twitteraccount of Isaiah Hines.
May 30, 2017, 2:11 AM
Citation Linksevendaysvt.comThe link to the article that was written about the effort to eradicate the "The Rebels" as a nickname from his school.
May 30, 2017, 2:12 AM
Citation Linkfacebook.comHis Facebookpost response to a post that was circulating about him.
May 30, 2017, 2:13 AM
Citation Linkfacebook.comDiscussion with High School and Middle School students led by Hines.
May 30, 2017, 2:25 AM
Citation Linkwcax.comArticle about how Hines is quoted in being for the eradication of the High School's nickname.
May 30, 2017, 2:28 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comVideo of Hines leading a discussion between Middle School and High School students.
May 30, 2017, 2:34 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comClip of Hines where he talks to students during a discussion.
May 30, 2017, 2:35 AM
Citation Linkvtdigger.orgArticle about Hines hometown calling to end all racism.
May 30, 2017, 2:54 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comPhoto of Hines when he presented his project about "White Fragility".
May 30, 2017, 3:01 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comPhoto of Hines with his friend.
May 30, 2017, 3:19 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comPhoto of Hines with a friend.
May 30, 2017, 3:20 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comPhoto of Hines with a friend going tubing.
May 30, 2017, 3:21 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comPhoto of Hines near the sea.
May 30, 2017, 3:22 AM
Citation Linkywqaugeunhowzrcj.public.blob.vercel-storage.comPhoto of Hines taken during the winter.
May 30, 2017, 3:23 AM
Citation Linkdocs.google.comHis "White People are Fragile" Project.
May 30, 2017, 4:32 AM