The basic premise of evolution is that over time humans adapted physically to survive longer in their environment. This concept seems benign enough and valid when viewed across a universal timeline. However, the idea of evolution has carried over from a scientific view formed through various discoveries to a personal truth fed by dinners of presumption and privilege.

Whenever white Americans analyze another country or ethnic group, they tend to analyze from an evolutionary viewpoint. For example, when analyzing a specific tribe in Africa, white Americans sometimes label their culture and rituals as “less than” the American culture they live in. The tribe is seen as needing to develop and grow into what America is, ritually, spiritually, technologically. In other words, the tribe is at the beginning of an evolutionary process that will help them strive to become the ever-advanced United States of America. Although, yes, the US is at the forefront of technological innovation and advancement, further than almost all countries, this in itself does not qualify their culture as better than another. The reason cultures are what they are and can be the center of a society is because they are unique to a group of people and express the individual values of those people. Technological advancement of one group can coexist with cultural equality of all groups.

Americans viewing other cultures as behind theirs evolutionarily is problematic in our country because that view adapts itself to the hierarchy of American life. In America, suburban white culture migrates to the end of the evolutionary timeline while diverse urban areas are pushed back to the beginning. This puts the culture of whiteness above all else, leading to the detrimental effects we see in our society today.

The fundamental issue with an evolutionary viewpoint in the context of anything other than evolution is that everything with an advanced, adapted ending must have a primitive beginning. Applying this to a society automatically puts one group below another, causing many problems.

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