Racism is a term that rears its ugly head far too frequently in the public square. Most of the time it is used with little understanding as to its actual meaning. Because of this, the use of the term is losing and has lost much of its intended sting.
Valid criticisms of the current President based on actions or policy are often dismissed by his ideological agents under the broad, sweeping accusation of racism. When these same criticisms are voiced by Blacks who do not share the President’s ideology, they are commonly attacked, even by other Blacks, with accusations of betraying the race. These accusations are often accompanied by racial slurs and insults, such as being called an “Uncle Tom” or an “Oreo cookie” – an insinuation that, while the target may be “Black” on the outside, they are “White” on the inside.
These attacks, properly translated, reveal an interesting conclusion; that all Blacks are under orders, emanating from nebulous sources, to think alike and support the President and/or the Democrat Party, lest they bear guilt for betraying the entire Black race. Somehow, this is acceptable and is not portrayed as racism, but non-Blacks who criticize the President without even mentioning his race are racists. It is a bit of a Twilight Zone world…
Modern definitions of racism parallel the following example:
Source: Bing.com – ra·cism [ ráy sìzzəm ]
- animosity toward other races: prejudice or animosity against people who belong to other races.
- belief in racial superiority:
- the belief that people of different races have different qualities and abilities, and that some races are inherently superior or inferior.
From a Christian perspective, the only definition that truly deserves the label of racism is part 2 of this example – the belief in racial superiority. Even the term “superiority” bears clarification. Defined as the placement of a greater intrinsic value on one race over another race or all other races, the definition is accurate.
Jesus Christ placed Himself on the cross for the benefit of every human being who ever has or ever will occupy space on this planet. Therefore, the value of every person was determined there at the cross, regardless of race. Furthermore, this value remains regardless of the individual, personal decision to accept the Gift of Salvation. Jesus paid the price; whether the Gift is accepted or not, the value of the individual has been determined.
Therefore, from a Christian perspective, true racism is really a question of value. Any person who believes that race has a role in determining the value of an individual is guilty of being a racist.
ALL MEN ARE CREATED EQUAL
In setting forth a new nation, America’s founders used this as a guiding principle – the inherent value of the individual as being created by God, and redeemed by a Savior. This principle was the cornerstone of the nation they created, and the laws they instilled within. It was a question of value.
True, slavery was prevalent in America at the time, as it was prevalent throughout the entire developed world. Even so, America’s founders set up a nation that would lead the way for the abolition of slavery throughout the world. Beyond that, America led the world in establishing equal rights for those who had previously been held as slaves. This goes beyond merely establishing laws, but in being embraced in American culture as truly equal. Change came slowly, but measured against other nations, and even with a bloody, unjust war muddying the waters, America still remained ahead of the curve.
What many fail to understand is that equal value does not mean equal functions, talents, abilities or traits. There are differences between individuals which allow them to be individuals. Likewise, there are differences between the races which define the races.
The third part of the definition posted above defines racism as: “the belief that people of different races have different qualities and abilities, and that some races are inherently superior or inferior.”
This is a fallacious perspective on racism. In the obvious example of skin tone, we can make the observation that White people have light skin, and Black people have dark skin. Is this observation racist? One could argue that it is an observation based in race, as it is a notation on a trait that distinguishes one race from another. However, it is quite a leap to label this as racism, unless one attributes significant value in the hue of one’s skin tone.
Many people hold the belief that some races are of higher intelligence than others. The majority of people believe that Black people are more athletically gifted than those of other races. Is this racist, from the standpoint of being a statement of greater value based on higher intelligence or increased athletic ability?
Clearly it is not. There are many reasons to view such claims with suspicion as to the merit of such claims being based in truth. However, even if it turned out to be true that some races are of higher intelligence while other races are of greater athletic ability, this does not equate to superior value.
Utilizing an imperfect analogy, many automobiles are on the market that carry a value of $100,000 or more. With $100,000 in his or her pocket, a person can choose between a wide array of automobile types, from luxury automobiles to SUVs; sports cars to pickup trucks and convertibles to hybrids (yes, there are many Hybrid automobiles in the $75,000 – $100,000 price range. Tesla’s Model S comes in at just under $95,000, and there are two manufacturers with products priced well over $100,000 – Audi and Lexus).
Each of these $100,000 vehicles have traits that are vastly different and are designed for uses that would destroy other vehicles of the same price. A person who wants to be able to drive 195 on the autobahn is not going to go for the Mercedes-Benz G Class, and the person who is looking for off-road adventure is not going to opt for the Porsche 911 Carrera. A person who wants to average 50 mpg or more is not going to be satisfied with a Hummer, and the person who wants to drive over boulders is not going to be too pleased with the results attained if he makes the attempt in a Lexus LS 600h at just over $119,000.
The mere statement that one is different than another is not inherently negative or prejudiced, unless the statement is accompanied with the assertion that the difference makes one better than another, excepting that the statement of superiority is not clarified by the assignment to a specific purpose. For example, the statement that the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport is the greatest car in the world because it can accelerate from 0 – 60 in 2.4 seconds would not qualify as a “racist” statement pertaining to other automobiles, as the person who makes the statement is merely revealing his bias for acceleration in evaluating automobiles. If the same person went on to say that any other automobile that cannot match that performance is therefore worthless, then that would be a “racist” statement. Again, this is not a perfect analogy, but the point should be clear.
For a real-world example of this principle, it has been well-documented that NBA great Larry Bird, who is White, viewed it as an insult when an opposing team assigned a White person to guard him.
“The one thing that always bothered me when I played in the NBA was I really got irritated when they put a White guy on me.” – Larry Bird
Reasonable people may agree or disagree on the veracity of Mr. Bird’s perceived inferiority of White athletes to Black athletes. What is inarguable is that this perception alone does not amount to racism. It simply means that Larry Bird believes that Black people are more athletic than are White people. Until Larry Bird attempts to build upon this claim that this perceived superior athletic ability equates to overall racial superiority and a greater value for Blacks over Whites, then there is no possible way to reasonably conclude that Larry Bird is racist against White people.
VALID QUESTIONS REGARDING RACIAL DIFFERENCES?
America faces many issues which are currently off-limits for inter-racial discussion due to these vast misconceptions on race and racism. For example, while comprising only 13% of the overall population in the United States of America, Blacks commit 75% of the violent crime. In an interesting coincidence, Black children are born to fatherless homes at almost the same rate – 72%. Of the violent crime committed by Blacks, 45% is committed against Whites. Conversely, there is a Black victim in only 3% of the cases of violent crime committed by Whites.
Is there a problem with racial hatred / racism in America? Most certainly there is. However, it stands to reason that much of the racism being attributed to Whites is really nothing more than a healthy prejudice. Since 1993, in the United States, Whites comprise roughly 90% of all hate crime victims. The statistics further bear out that while they are the most frequent victims of non-violent inter-racial crime, Blacks are 50 times more likely to commit violent crime against Whites than Whites commit against Blacks.
This would render part 1 of the above definition as also moot. Animosity towards other races without provocation or justification is certainly a sign of racism. However, who could fault a person or a people from harboring animosity towards another race if they experience a continued pattern of persecution and molestation from members of that race? That would be a like a person who has been stung by bees on several occasions harboring a prejudice or resentment against bees. This prejudice or resentment does not mean this person believes bees to be of any greater or lesser value than other insects. It simply means this person has a very valid perception that bees pose an extraordinary threat to him, beyond that of other insects.
This likely explains why race crimes committed by Blacks against Whites have largely been ignored by the national media. The crime gets reported, but the details as to the race of the attacker and the victim are left out of the story.
Outside of the national media, the epidemic of Black-on-White violent crime has been well-chronicled. One resource on this data is a book published in September, 2012, authored by Colin Flaherty, “White Girl Bleed A Lot.”
On the subject of this book, Thomas Sowell writes:
“That phrase was spoken by a member of a mob of young blacks who attacked whites at random at a Fourth of July celebration in Milwaukee last year. What I was appalled to learn, in the course of my research, was that such race riots have occurred in other cities across the United States in recent years – and that the national mainstream media usually ignore these riots.
Where the violence is too widespread and too widely known locally to be ignored, both the local media and public officials often describe what happened as unspecified “young people” attacking unspecified victims for unspecified reasons. But videos of the attacks often reveal both the racial nature of these attacks and the racial hostility expressed by the attackers.
Are race riots not news?
Ignoring racial violence only guarantees that it will get worse. The Chicago Tribune has publicly rationalized its filtering out of any racial identification of attackers and their victims, even though the media do not hesitate to mention race when decrying statistical disparities in arrest or imprisonment rates.
Such mob attacks have become so frequent in Chicago that officials promoting conventions there have recently complained to the mayor that the city is going to lose business if such widespread violence is not brought under control.
But neither these officials nor the mayor nor most of the media use that four-letter word, “race.” It would not be politically correct or politically convenient in an election year.
Reading Colin Flaherty’s book made painfully clear to me that the magnitude of this problem is even greater than I had discovered from my own research. He documents both the race riots and the media and political evasions in dozens of cities across America.
Flaherty’s previous writings have won him praise and awards, but this book has been met largely with silence or abuse. However much ignoring the ugly realities that his book reveals may serve the interests of the media or politicians, a cover-up is a huge disservice to everyone else – whether black, white or whatever.
Even the young hoodlums who launch these mass attacks on strangers would be better off to be stopped now, rather than continue on a path of escalating violence that can lead to a lifetime behind bars or to the execution chamber.
The dangers to the nation as a whole are an even bigger problem. The truth has a way of eventually coming out, in spite of media silence and politicians’ spin. If the truth becomes widely known, and a white backlash follows, turning one-way race riots into two-way race riots, then a cycle of revenge and counter-revenge can spiral out of control, as has already happened in too many other countries around the world.
Most blacks and most whites in the United States today get along with each other. But what is chilling is how often in history racial or ethnic groups that co-existed peacefully for generations – often as neighbors – have suddenly turned on each other with lethal violence.”
The facts are sobering. For every Trayvon Martin, there is a long list of heinous, vile and brutal attacks that are truly based in race. Many of these attacks have occurred in the name of Trayvon Martin, in the wake of the false racial narrative put forth by media giants such as NBC News.
In a suburban neighborhood in Florida, March, 2012, an adult Hispanic male was performing his duties as a volunteer neighborhood watch when he spotted a 17 year-old, large Black male wearing a dark hoodie and wandering around the neighborhood in the rain. Suspecting the person may be on drugs, he called 911. While on the call, he lost sight of the hooded teen, but waited for police to arrive. The teen returned and attacked the neighborhood watch volunteer, sucker-punching him and breaking his nose, knocking him to the ground. Once on the ground, the large Black male mounted the fallen man and continued punching him in the face and head. He then began banging the man’s head into the pavement, at which point the neighborhood watch volunteer produced his pistol and shot his attacker, killing him at the scene.
This is being portrayed as a race crime? Here are some examples of other violent crimes committed by Blacks against Whites with greater evidence of racial motivation than the Martin – Zimmerman case, and occurring within months of the Martin – Zimmerman case:
- In May of 2012, a 30 year-old Black male walked into a Target store in Dallas, pulled a kitchen knife off of the store shelf and removed it from its packaging. He then walked up on a 29 year-old White woman browsing in the store, approaching her from behind, and stabbed her in the back with the knife. He then left the store. The two had never met, and did not know each other. The woman survived and was able to provide a description, and the man was later arrested.
- In August, 2012, two Black males, 18, drove to a White neighborhood in St. Louis and targeted a White female, 20. They spotted her talking on her cell phone, then stopped their vehicle next to her, charged at her from the vehicle and shot her twice in the head, point-blank range, killing her. The two Black assailants then stole her cell phone.
- Finally, in March of 2012, the same month as the Zimmerman case, an elderly White couple who had just celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary the previous December had their Tulsa, OK, home invaded by a 20 year-old Black male. The 85 year-old woman was severely beaten, raped, then beaten to death. The 90 year-old man was also beaten, suffering a broken jaw, broken ribs and severe bleeding. He had also been repeatedly shot in the face with a BB gun. The elderly couple were discovered by their daughter who had come to their home to check on them. Otherwise, they had both been left for dead.
This is just a small sampling of cases from 2012 alone. There are other cases in recent years far more graphic and brutal than those listed here, yet none of these cases have brought the media attention garnered by the Zimmerman case.
In 2005, there were more than 645,000 victims of cross-racial violent crimes between Blacks and Whites in the U.S. In 90 percent of those crimes, Black offenders attacked White victims. Some claim that the reasons for the disparity are rooted in conditions of environment. Others claim that there is a greater propensity towards violence among members of the Black and Hispanic races.
“Judge Edith Jones of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals addressed the University of Pennsylvania law school on Feb. 20. Her comments were not recorded, but five students and one attorney who were in attendance signed affidavits swearing to what they heard. The complaint alleges that Jones said certain ‘racial groups like African-Americans and Hispanics are predisposed to crime,’ and that they are ‘prone to commit acts of violence’ and be involved in more violent and ‘heinous’ crimes than people of other ethnicities.”
These comments are obviously inflammatory, but do they constitute racism? It is a fact that Blacks and Hispanics are responsible for a disproportionate share of the violent crime committed in the United States. That fact alone does not make the judge’s assertion true. At the same time, there is no data available which would eliminate the possibility. What is the reason for the fear of pursuing the truth, following the evidence wherever it leads?
What if discoveries occurred in the fields of genetics and biology which proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that some races were more athletic than others, while other races displayed higher intelligence, and still others displayed higher tendencies towards violence? Should the scientists who made the discoveries be labeled as racists and locked away for their “hate crimes,” or would we be better off as a society armed with this information, which could then be utilized as a catalyst to honest dialog about how to address the problem? After all, it is a scientific fact that men have been shown to display higher levels of aggression than women. Even so, men are not widely regarded as being less valuable than women. Why should it be so if similar discoveries were to be made with regard to differences between race?
Until America gains a firmer grasp on the true meaning of racism, and ceases to misuse and abuse the term as a part of silly political gamesmanship, it will be very difficult to address the problem at a root level. To do so requires an adult conversation, where actual data pertaining to racial components is not only allowed, but encouraged, to be introduced, discussed and explored, wherever the evidence leads. Not for the purposes of assigning blame, but to provide solutions that will solve the problem at its root, which is always a matter of the heart.
To continue to obfuscate, ignore and misrepresent the problem is very likely to make Thomas Sowell a prophet. History shows what happens when the voice of the people is removed or denied. White America was already largely aware of the dangers of Black crime being visited upon it. Now, they are becoming increasingly aware of the effort to conceal the truth.
A change in course regarding our public discourse on race could not possibly come too soon.