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Dagobahn Eagle
04-07-2003, 10:00 PM
I started a debate on this a long time ago, and it was something that attracted a lot of people, and it's a global issue: Race/minority group relations.

My question is, how do we fight racism? To answer that, I'm going to define racism: Believing that your race is superior to another race. Racism is closely related to generalizing and stereotyping, except those two can be solved easily by geography and history education.

Racism is more tricky. Yes, education will go a long way, but education might also do more harm than good (for example, some dark-skinned people in the USA start getting an attitude towards light people when learning about the Civil Rights Movement of the 60's).

My propoasal, however, is the opposite: Ignorance to differences.

Society as we live in today draws way too many lines. In my opinion, with respect to Racial Pride, words describing races, sexual orientation, fetishes, economic classes etc. all have to go. Sure, we should learn about foreign countries (goes without saying), but don't teach kids to classify before they get into middle/high school (by then they'll be integrated enough to understand that segregation is ridiculous). Also, don't teach geography by starting with asking kids what comes to mind when thinking about a specific continent/region, such as Africa. If someone did this about Europe, I would have laughed.

You may ask how on Earth this would help, so let me explain: When do children start stereotyping and segregating by race? Not the first time they meet a child with a different skin colour, but when they learn the concept of races: Call these people that, those people that.

To illustrate: My little brother (4th grade), upon moving here, was to describe a dark-skinned kid in his class and surprise, described him by his clothing. He's not blind: He must have seen that the kid's skin colour was different, yet he didn't care. That's the society that I want (now, sadly, he's learned about races and stereotypes Asians like my mom on crack).

Another example: If you travel to Scandinavia (and probably other leftist nations) there will be little or no segregation by classes. Why? Because we don't categorize level of income into classes like most other nations do. Actually, although I had friends with bigger and smaller houses than mine and more or less stuff than me, I never classified them or called anyone different on the basis of that, simply because I couldn't. Nor did anyone else I knew, except from the trouble-makers, and no one I've known in my school have ever been picked on for their low income.. except from when people display their income, that's when we call them snobs.

If someone asked me how much money I had, I'd call the person extremely eccentric. Yes, we notice the differences, but we're not told how to draw lines. By the age of 11-14 we're starting to learn the facts (naturally), but by then we're integrated and don't care about each others' income (except from allowance, etc.:D), simply because we think it's irrelevant..

What's my conclusion? Well, look at the way a child's mind works:

If you tell your kid to spend more time with another kid, he'll want to spend less time with that kid and the other way around.
If you inform your kid that his friend is different in a way, the kid will also spend less time with that kid (unless they're already friends).

So in conclusion, don't tell your kid that every group is equal: Refrain from telling him they are different groups in the first place. Look at words like "gay" and "homo". You hear those words befor you realise what they mean, and by the time you realise what they mean, you've started to associate them with something bad.

Zygomaticus
04-07-2003, 10:17 PM
I just want to make a comment, and that's all. Not on your opinion, Eagle, but on Bigots.

Now, I may only speak from a US citizen point of view, or from a Californian point of view, or merely from a Bay Arean point of view, but I'll say it. Racism is little present in among the "intelligent" or the people who can really claim that they are better than most others.

The people who are racists, atleast here, aren't really in a position to claim superiority as their own performances, be it academic, athletic or anything, show.

Maybe make it clear that they really aren't necessarily better.

That's all I have to say about that.

I won't reply again in this thread as it's something I discuss sparsely...especially on a special day...

Artoo
04-07-2003, 10:35 PM
Heehee, this is a good one. Good choice for topic DB. :D

You have a great idea there, and I totally understand where you are coming from. It will be hard for me not to classify people as long as a certain group of people acts a certain way. It will be logical for me to classify them together. Sure there are the odd people out of their group who will act completely differently, but as long as the average way people act is different, then I will still classify people differently. When I find a group of people (I have found one place that is this way) who are "racially diverse" (no offense) yet act basically the same way, then the concept of races goes out the window. The one place I have found this to be true, is Washington D.C. I walked for a week around the D.C. area, I rode the subway, and I visited all the monuments. Every single person that I saw going to work had a good attitude. They were hardworking and it was obvious they were all out to earn a living. Yet they were very "racially diverse." But while I was there I didn't see race, I saw one hard-working person after another.

So until it doesn't matter what race you are, you still take the same views on life, then I will not classify people by race. *nods*

You have a very good plan to destroy rascism though.

pbguy1211
04-08-2003, 03:51 AM
Originally posted by krkode
Now, I may only speak from a US citizen point of view, or from a Californian point of view, or merely from a Bay Arean point of view, but I'll say it. Racism is little present in among the "intelligent" or the people who can really claim that they are better than most others.

Sorry, but I disagree... strongly.

And I'm guessing Eagle is white... if that's the case I can't even debate this.

Dagobahn Eagle
04-08-2003, 07:05 PM
And I'm guessing Eagle is white... if that's the case I can't even debate this.
If that's about racial pride, sorry. If, however, it's about not being the right person to give an opinion because my skin is light, I strongly disagree. If you meant "not black", then I disagree less (do a Taiwanese kid have more of a right to speak up against racial classification than a Norwegian kid? In that case, why?)

Artoo, you're right, but I just want to point out one thing: People are diverse. With "same race" I don't mean same people. With "same race" I don't mean same culture. I also respect dark Americans' rights to look at themselves as "the blacks", and have racial pride.

But classifications like by race create misconceptions. Take the term "Inter-racial dating", which some people oppose because of culture collisions. Sounds like a sound argument on the surface, but do you know the two people dating are so different?

Let's say I date a blond Russian. Different culture.
Let's say I date a teen from China who got adopted by Norwegians when she was 1 year old and acts Norwegian. Or a brown fifth-generation Norwegian. Different races, yes, but which do you think will be most different from me: The blonde Russian or the Chinese Norseman?

Races create misconceptions like that. Same with terms like "sexual orientation", and "homosexual". It emphasises differences and draws a line where there is no line. You just like boys (or in girls' case, girls). So what? Girls like guys too, you aren't going to call them something weird too, are you ;)? And classes.. well, I present my homeland as evidence.

Parents can of course educate kids on diversity and Black Unity even if there is no classification by race. Tell the children that many dark-coloured people like to look at themselves as one people, although they're all from different countries.

I think I'm starting to fully comprehend why this offends so many dark-skinned people now: I used religion as an analogy. If someone said we were all one religion, I'd be angry at them. I supposed that's how all dark-skinned people feel about me.

Zygomaticus
04-08-2003, 08:01 PM
Originally posted by pbguy1211
Sorry, but I disagree... strongly.



Care to say why? If not, then it's okay. I said I was speaking from a Bay Arean point of view, which is where I live. Even if it was present, it's not shown out, and as long as it's not shown openly, the best you can do is assume it doesn't exist.

pbguy1211
04-08-2003, 08:25 PM
Originally posted by krkode
Care to say why? If not, then it's okay. I said I was speaking from a Bay Arean point of view, which is where I live. Even if it was present, it's not shown out, and as long as it's not shown openly, the best you can do is assume it doesn't exist.
Sorry I can't/wont elaborate here. But I simply, respectfully disagree.

Zygomaticus
04-08-2003, 08:28 PM
Originally posted by pbguy1211
Sorry I can't/wont elaborate here. But I simply, respectfully disagree.
Fair enough. I'll still stick to my above expressed opinion by saying that anyone who IS, or is supposed to be, "intelligent" and still is racist, isn't really "good enough" for his title. Or something like that.:rolleyes:

Dagobahn Eagle
04-08-2003, 08:30 PM
Pbguy, did it ever occur to you that it's a bit strange that there's as much racism as there is in the States when it's so diverse?

Artoo said that no matter what we're thaught, we learn to segregate because we notice something is different. Not so. In countries with low diversity, a dark-skinned (or if the dark-skinned people are minorities, a pink person) would be different no matter what the kids learned.

In the States, however, you interact with people of other ethnicities before you're fully potty-trained. Shouldn't you learn that other whites don't bite (almost rhymes)? I think that's society's fault. You learn about your racist history (note that I said that instead of present, it's improved a lot and the USA is above average now) way too early, and a lot of parents give their kids too much attitude (goes for all people to all people).

What KrKode says partly holds true: Racists are cowards and not too brave -in fact, the reason why they didn't spend time with "the others" is that they were afraid. Now they're afraid to admit that they were wrong.

Zygomaticus
04-08-2003, 09:05 PM
The Autobiography of Malcolm X by Alex Haley is an interesting read. Although his ideas are a bit extreme, he's a vastly misunderstood man. I quite enjoyed the book. (Trust me though, I didn't read it voluntarily...school obligation) :p