RACISM TODAY (June 2016).
Readers are welcome and encouraged to leave comments.
This racism thing that is being bandied about has got me puzzled. Where does it come from, and what does it mean ?? I decided to start with the Oxford Dictionary (Which, by the way is, the oldest and most eminent reference available). It is hoped that with the aid of the dictionary coupled with my own years of observations, a clear and logical picture will present itself. I elected to start with the Base Word – Race.
RACE 1. A competition where the winner is decided by the order of arrival at the finishing post / line. – “No not that one”.
RACE 2. 1. Each of the major divisions of humankind having distinct physical characteristics. 2. A group descended from a common ancestor. 3. A group of people with a common feature. 4. A distinct population within a species. A subspecies. – “OK this all seems pretty obvious”.
RACE RELATIONS. Relations between members of different races within a country. “OK. This has been in existence for some time it seems”. Nothing new here. But note; that these differences have been long since noted. Humanity has always known there is more than a superficial difference between different races, otherwise there would be no need for the words or concept of “Race Relations”. It is unlikely that only English speaking people were aware of these racial differences. “Differentism”.
RACISM 1. My dictionary simply says – Favouring your own. “Not much wrong with that”. Everyone is included. I guess the same could be said for Teamism, Schoolism, Colourism, Tribalism, Religiousism, Nationalism and Languageism. All favouring their own. For example the Allblacks are hardly likely to favour the Springboks or the Wallabies, especially during the game. – Teamism ! !
RACISM 2. But a newer dictionary has something to add. 1. Holding the belief that each race or ethnic group possesses specific characteristics, abilities (and I suppose inabilities), or qualities that distinguish it from another such group. 2. Discrimination against, or antagonism towards other races or ethnic groups, based on such a belief.
“Notice the slant in the definition” the race or ethnic group in question is believed to possess abilities and qualities – not inabilities or inequalities. Also, to show discrimination and antagonism towards the race or ethnic group in question – not help or encouragement. Think about this, it is becoming quite difficult to accurately define Racism. What would the word be if one race showed undue support or praise for another race or ethnic group? Apparently it has never happened before – there is no word for it. But we all know that it has happened before. It is loosely, albeit variously described, but well understood, such as charity, or aid. Aid verses Thwart. Help, rather than hinder.
But wait a minute. I had better check on this Ethnic Group – Who are they ? ?
ETHNIC; 1. Group of people having a common national or cultural tradition. “Well that is pretty vague, could be everyone”. 2. Denoting origin by birth or descent, rather than present nationality. 3. And here is the nub. Characteristic of, or belonging to a non-western cultural tradition. 4. Modern Usage, is to refer to non-white people as a whole. So perhaps we can have an Ethnicists – Those who favour Ethnic Groups. Ethnicism. Nah, they can be racists like everyone else, and favour their own. It also seems that white Caucasian People can never be an Ethnic group.
Getting back to the different races. At the extreme one end you have people with black skin and curly hair, we can say these people are of African Origin (Although peoples fitting this description exist in New Guinea and Fiji). At the extreme other end, you have people with white skin and straight hair, we can say these people are of Caucasian Origin. Most of the world’s populations fits proportionally between these two extremes. But, there are some significant populations that do not fit neatly into this spectrum. For example those living just south of the Himalayas with dark hued skin and straight hair, and those living in the Far East, commonly known as Orientals. These two groups do not seem to concern themselves with racism.
What is a RACIST REMARK? Well I am damned if I know ! ! But I am going to knock it around a bit to see if I can find an answer.
First of all it would have to be of a racist nature, and secondly it would have to come from a member of a particular race, and be directed at a member of another race (or would it?), and thirdly it would have to refer to one or more of the characteristic differences believed to be between these two, or more races. Believed ? ? Hell no. It is actually right in your face. Let me give it a full spectrum try – from a curley to a straighty, “Hey honky you have straight hair” or “Hey you white bitch, you have grass growing on your head” or “Hey white man, how come you have a black car“. Or “Hey you white slut, your arse is big as a bus”. Pretty harmless and ineffectual isn’t it. That is because the straighties are pretty much immune to racist remarks for two reasons. 1. They are genuinely and mostly proud of what they are, and 2. From whence the remark came, kind of like the Cat spitting at the Doberman. Or a kindergarten student shouting at a university Professor of any race. To the Doberman and the Professor – it hardly matters. Of course, if the poor girl did have an arse as big as a bus, she would be offender no matter from whom the remark came. I am assuming that if, the remark came from another straighty it would not be a Racist Remark, although it could still be offensive. Now from a Straighty to a Curly – an entirely different matter. Hey Bantu, you look like a baboon, or Hey curly top, you can not add-up, or Hey darkie, your lips are flapping. These remarks would result in a display of great offence and anger – genuine or not. As an example; I recently had a Black Traffic Cop (Curley Cop – roles of the tongue nicely doesn’t it), but that is deliberate, who was at my driver’s window and enjoying constantly addressing me as old man (which I am).
When I addressed him as “Black Man” (which he was) – (Doberman growls back at spitting cat, and spitting cat reacts the only way it can, by hissing / spitting louder). He immediately accused me of being a racist. I was actually favouring him (not favouring own) with a comment on something he, and his kind claim to be proud of, or so they say. As an aside, I wonder what his reaction would have been if I addressed him as Bantu man, or African man?
It dawned on me that he knew he was a black man, and was very unhappy about it. After all, he was the one standing in the sun.
There is no need to recite any further examples of Racist Remarks from Straightes to Curleys. The slightest reference to any racially distinguishing feature, be it physical, mental, metaphysical, cultural, intellect, aroma, linguistics, honesty, colour, educational or characteristic, implied, or direct, mostly results in a negative response of hurt or anger, or anything in between. It appears the Curley’s are most definitely not pleased with their characteristics.
The straighty is immediately accused of Racism, or being a Racist. But given, by definition, we are all racists, this is pretty weird huh? ? I cannot think of any racist remark levelled at a straighty, from a curly, that would induce any degree of hurt or anger. The straighty knows what he is, knows what his capabilities are, and what he can do with those capabilities, and continues to get on with those doings, unhindered and unassisted. From whence the remark came further dilutes it, even if the remark has some merit. I should point out there is a huge difference between a Racist Remark and a Racist Threat. A Racist Threat from anyone who has the means to carry out that threat is serious. In law this is called Criminal Injuria.
Some explanation may be in the obvious fact that Curlys want everything, possessions or features the Straightys have, (if they know about it), including straight hair, and Straightys do not want any thing, or feature the Curleys have, including curly hair. Simple examples of this are Straight Hair, Mental Arithmetic, Light Skin, House, Cool Car, Clean and Hygienic Surroundings, Professional Occupation, Flash Clothes, Education, Importance, and a European Language. There are other much desired attributes.
Allow me to look at the not-so-simple differences. Remember we are talking about the two extremes of races (Straightys and Curlys) on earth today. Also I can only see these differences by means of observation. So it is an unadulterated Straighty perspective, but with a little deductive common sense. Hey, I said differences, but in many examples it is direct – In your face – opposites.
- The Curlies have a penchant to destroy, particularly that which they did not build – Straightys have an urge to build.
2. Curlies try to avoid high powered academia – Straightys embrace high powered literary and technical academia.
3. Curlies have great difficulty pronouncing the words and understanding the grammar of European languages – Straighties quickly grasp the grammar and pronunciation of European languages, but encounter difficulties with African languages. I suspect vocal chords may be partly to blame. I am still unsure if Curlies understand each other in English.
4. Curlies tend to mumble when they are lying – Straighties tend to be emphatic when they are lying.
5. Curlies will continue to lie even though they know the listener will soon know, or already knows, the truth – Straighties will stop lying when they realize they will soon be found out.
6. Curlies would rather have less work and less pay – Straighties would rather have more work and more pay.
7. “Logic” – If the bus breaks down the Curleys will burn the bus, that way it will never break down again – The Straighties will attempt to repair, and then find alternative transport. If the Rogue Taxi picks up the Genuine Taxi’s passengers, the genuine Curley taxi driver will shoot the passengers, after-all, they were the ones who boarded the rogue taxi. – The genuine Straighty taxi driver will shoot the Rogue Taxi driver.
8. The Curley, if at fault, will use the same excuse over and over. Usually blaming the actions of another person, or racial group – The Straighty, when at fault, will endeavour to dream up a new excuse, and be careful not to repeat themselves, as that would imply no learning ability.
9. Whilst asking for a loan, a Curly has every intention of repaying that loan. But once the loan is given, that intention evaporates. The Straighty on the other hand maintains the intention to pay it back.
10. Curlies stutter an inordinate amount when speaking English, particularly medium and high level officials. Straighties take great care of their elocution.
11. Curlies tend to display the trappings of wealth, way beyond being comfortably well off. Straighties tend to be discrete about their wealth beyond being comfortably well off.
12. Curlies generally only react to a problem or mishap after it has happened. Whereas Straighties generally try to prevent a problem or mishap from occurring in the first place. For example, after massive demonstrations of looting and burning at an overcrowded squatter camp. The Curley government promises to build 50 000 houses in 3 months – problem solved, but it is not!
It is very difficult to grasp the concept of equality between races when there are so many differences. In fact I ask myself “why even try?”
What characteristics do the different races have in common? Well, not much. All I can think of, is the individual’s desire to be important. But the level of how important is it to be important, or seen to be important varies across the spectrum.
The forerunner to the latter, now branded, apartheid, in South Africa was “Separate Development”. This seemed like the perfect plan to cater for these differences. In fact it was a good plan. It catered for different races, confined to a single geographic land mass. Each group could develop simultaneously, adhering to their own particular nature of likes and dislikes, and differences. The dividing line had to be drawn somewhere, and it was. Whites and Non-Whites. Maybe not too fair on those in between, but there it was. Well the two groups did develop separately, and simultaneously, but not equally.
The non-whites could easily see (sometimes just across the road) how the whites had developed, and wanted it, and the whites could easily see how the non-whites had developed, and did not want it. Part 2 to follow.