Thank you for this personal essay: it must have been difficult to face this all again after having to experience it the first time.
Unfortunately, your story isn’t that rare. I’ve been tokenized and observed it, repeatedly, in POC after POC, in decades of my own career.
There’s one motivation, as far as I can tell, for a variety of white responses, inclusive of ones such as ‘you’re attacking me:’ to keep power while cloaking oneself with the falsehood of diversity and equality. This is called hypocrisy, and it lacks functional human morality.
White supremacy is still very active. It has one agenda: keep white people in power, and with the money and all the other advantages without regard, one way or the other, as to whether or not their actions produce quality or value. This is because most white people as a collective believe that their mere existence as white is the definition of quality, as an outgrowth of the deeply amoral worldwide philosophy of Manifest Destiny, shoved down the throats of 90% of the human race by the (presumptively) ‘superior’ ten percent/European background.
Once I understood this, every single statement and behavior that white people exhibit fell into place.
The notion that there are real efforts to be equitable will not be real until white people both collectively and as individuals are willing to give ‘up’ the tremendous advantage they have just for being white; in fact, this is a giving ‘back’ because the history is so long-standing and toxic: so much has been stolen.
This would mean that they no longer get most promotions — or even jobs — awards, publications, board-level positions, etc — BUT they are not willing to give this ‘up’/that is, back. This is the only conclusion that supports the egregious behaviors we’re forced to witness as POC, and only a remediation of this profound advantage — which most white people aren’t even willing to admit they have — will change our society.