What Is Racism?
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What is Racism
Racism is defined as a belief that a particular race is either more superior or inferior to the other, taking into account social and morals traits that are deciphered by biological characteristics (Rasool et al., 2020). Racism paves the way for racial separatism which is defined as a belief that asserts the segregation of different races from each other. Racism is a myth, undefined and unsorted, but various fields and departments of life have tried to reflect on it, such as science, sociology, anthropology and even religion (Rasool et al., 2020). This paper aims at the analysis of racism, in the light of different scientific, social and cultural approaches.
Racism is termed as a social phenomenon that has different dimensions, the impact of these dimensions can be traced in the different departments of life ranging from education to religion and society building to that of political handlings. Several researches are conducted over time, highlighting that although “anti-discrimination” and “say no to racism” is found everywhere, sometimes it is the embellishment of social media, sometimes it is dominant in the speeches of political leaders but unfortunately, it is deep-rooted in the minds and hearts of the people(Rasool et al., 2020). There are different names of racism, depending on the framework in which it is practiced. sometimes, it is the clueless aggression of a white teacher towards black student, sometimes it is the negligence or abuse of a patient by a doctor of some other race affirming that inferiority is the root cause of all diseases. It is also seen in the violations of the political and legal institutions that are said to be global but applicable to the major community only, while many times it is seen in the form of physical violence that is practiced on the members of other race because they are the only ones on which majority community representatives can practice their power and over-power them (Rasool et al., 2020).
Racism is a matter of fact, that is seen all historical elements and codes such as the colonial era when whites were given all the privileges and rights while the same rights were denied for the other people belonging to the minorities or other races. Then, the long historical quotes on slavery, immigration, Native American Reservation, and naturalization laws all depict how racism has been a staunch phenomenon that was and even in present time implemented as a code of conduct (Where does racism happen, 2020). Even today, there are several examples of racism such as, a large number of criminal cases in which blacks are jailed, without any solid proofs, raids that target ethnic communities specifically and the hateful crimes that are driven by no sound logic. Many other examples are seen every now and then on social media as well. There are several online forums where a website is designed with an aim to spread racism, which demands the attention of laws and regulations (Where does racism happen, 2020).
In the present time, racism is treated as a gap that behooves someone to either hate Others, be physically violent or developed an evident negative approach towards others. According to a research conducted by Cramer (2020), in a survey of 2380 young people who were 13-17 years old, it was found that about 89% of them have ever experienced and witnessed racism, which is more commonly seen online or in schools. According to the Alberta Civil Liberties Research Centre, racism is defined as an amalgamation of racial prejudice with power (Where does racism happen, 2020). It is more like a set of discriminatory or derogatory attitudes that are based on assumptions deriving from perceptions about skin color, race or other biological traits. Racism in the present time is more like air, found everywhere, prevalent in all minds, rarely either with positive connotations and commonly with negative connotations. It takes many forms and takes many shapes depending on the context. Racism then paves the way for racist activities, racial bullying and sometimes racial harassment that can cause huge harm to the subject community (Where does racism happen, 2020)
There are different types of racism, such as religious racism, biological racism, and cultural racism. The names of the types define the underlying stance such as discrimination in terms of religious beliefs and hatred towards other religious associations. Cultural racism is discrimination or hatred towards the norms of their society or culture, while biological racism is most common of all that is dependent on the physical appearance or the genetic traits that are dominant in one race. Sometimes it is present in the form of hatred towards other race, sometimes in the form of feeling of superiority over others and many times it can take the shape of a violent act that can even harm someone to death. In sociology, racism is defined as an ideology that is practical, it is the practice of discrimination at different levels from personal abuse to that of colonial oppression (Cramer & K, 2020). In historical terms, racism is defined as in terms of face discrimination such as Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people who have to face the barriers that were not usually faced by Australians. Different political institutions have facilitated understanding of racism such as White Australian Policy, The Stolen Generational and Bisbee Deportation (Butler-Barnes et al., 2020).
In sociology, racism is defined as the color of mind that allows people to shift their attitude when they encounter or see someone of different color and race in front of them. All these aspects assert the question, either racism is natural or it is adopted. The answer to this question is profoundly given by, Rasool (2020) proposing that racism is not natural, none of the human beings is born with a hatred for others in their heart. It is something that is learned while staying at home or imposed or embedded by the social surroundings (Rasool et al., 2020). The stance of racism as being incorporated by the social setting as well evaluated by different authors and researchers such as Rasool (2020) and Butler-Barnes, (2020), highlighting that a newborn child or toddler has nothing to do with a different color and race. They are equally welcoming to all types of races and color, but it is the adult attitude that shapes the framework of thought. One of the most common examples of this ideology is seen in referring “Americans as White” and “Africa’s as Black”, here the point of conflict is, color can never be a connotation of the race to which a particular community belongs (Cramer & K, 2020). In sociology, different researchers have tried to elaborate and explore the underlying stance of racism and they ended up in finding that it is more like a social setting, there are rare societies, even equal to none in which there is no discrimination. In addition, it is found that racism has also become a social institution because it is one of the major elements of pride that is being highlighted by the people who are white or belong to some other ethnic background (Rasool et al., 2020).
The stance of racism and how it developed or perceived is well understood and evaluated in science as well, taking into account that experiment “Blue eyes, brown eyes” conducted by Jane Elliot. She performed an experiment in which she took two groups of students one was green-eyed and the other was brown-eyed. One day she taught her students that the brown-eyed students are better than the green-eyed students. These experiment results provided arbitrary division among the students that “Brown-eyed people are better than green-eyed people" intensified with the passage of time. It went to such an extreme that the students started physical violence. The other extreme of the experiment was the inverse in which students were told that the brown-eyed people are inferior to the green-eyed people and the result was again the same (Racism in science: the taint that lingers, 2019). Thus, her experiment provided that when a few hours enforcement can be so violent and destructive then the stance of racism that is imposed and embedded from childhood can do more destruction that one can ever think. The scientific experiment highlighted that it is all about upbringing if children are not taught that there is something like being racist, or discrimination towards someone, one of the major evils of this world can be eradicated (Racism in science: the taint that lingers, 2019).
Critical insight and an in-depth evaluation of social, religious, cultural and even scientific aspects highlight that racism is a social phenomenon, a matter of fact and a psychological gap that pushes and behooves people to develop a false perspective, narrowed approaches and negative attitude towards other which can cross any extreme. In a nutshell, it is seen that racism is found everywhere yet nowhere because it is not treated as something that is external to the social order, in fact, it is practiced unknowingly, knowing that it is wrong. Racism is a dilemma that demands attention from humanitarian agencies and other law-making bodies because it is not just a threat to the human association but it is a threat to the global world because this inter-conflict is getting more violent with the passage of time. availability and approach to better resources of times will add fire to this threat. It is feared that this developing and growing dilemma might lead to a war that will not only harm people of the present time but it will leave a long-lasting scar on the history of mankind as well.
Butler-Barnes, S. T., Allen, P. C., Williams, M. A., & Jackson, A. N. (2020). Stereotypes of African Americans. Stereotypes: The Incidence and Impacts of Bias, 109.
Cramer, K. (2020). Understanding the Role of Racism in Contemporary US Public Opinion. Annual Review of Political Science, 23.
Racism in science: the taint that lingers. (2019). Retrieved 26 January 2020, from https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-019-01968-z
Rasool, Z., & Ahmed, Z. (2020). Power, bureaucracy and cultural racism. Critical Social Policy, 0261018319895487.
Where does racism happen? | Australian Human Rights Commission. (2020). Retrieved 26 January 2020, from https://www.humanrights.gov.au/our-work/education/where-does-racism-happen
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