Racism

According to dictionary.com, racism is (1) a belief or doctrine that inherent differences among the various human races determine cultural or individual achievement, usually involving the idea that one’s own race is superior and has the right to rule others, or (2) a policy, system of government, etc. based upon or fostering such a doctrine; discrimination, or (3) hatred or intolerance of another race or other races.

“I’m better than you because I’m from here and you’re from there.”  That kinda sums it up.  Sounds like a pretty stupid opinion to me.  There are good people everywhere, there are bad people everywhere.  You can’t tell if someone is better or worse than you from where they came from or what they look like.  You can only tell that by their actions.  Individual merit.

The American Heritage New Dictionary defines a stereotype as a generalization, usually exaggerated or oversimplified and often offensive, that is used to describe or distinguish a group.

Usually exaggerated or oversimplified.  What about if it’s not?  It’s still a stereotype, right?

There are a lot of things we’re not supposed to say, and a lot of things we’re not supposed to think.  But who decides what’s racist and what’s not?  Is it decided by the offended group?  If so, it seems like there’s room for some misuse of the word.  Is there some official organization that determines whether something is racist or not?  And if there is, does it represent a specific group?  That wouldn’t be fair to all the other groups.  If a person can be accurately described by an ethnic stereotype, is it still racist to think of them that way or to call them that?

I think sometimes people will label a thing as “racist” when what it really is is “accurate but offensive”.  Should we really use the term “racism” to describe everything that offends us?  I’ve seen people call other people of their own race racists because they disagree on a topic.  Can a person be racist against his/her own race?  You’d have to really be hating life to be against your own race.  You can’t get away from yourself.  You can try, but you’ll follow you everywhere you go.

Maybe the word “racist” needs to be looked at.  It’s definition is fine, but it’s use is what I question. 

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