December 4 2012
RACISM STILL BEING ACTIVE IN TODAY’S SOCIETY
There is controversy in the definition of the word racism. This is because; there is little agreement by scholars on the understanding of the concept “race” while there is little agreement on what constitutes discrimination. Racism is the practice of believing in racial differences that act as a reason for non-equal treatment of the race members. There is the use of the term in many occasions on the negative side as it has the association of race-based discrimination, dislike, oppression, violence and prejudice. This is what is under discussion. In the interview, there is the definition of racism as a negative view to an individual or a definite racial classification of people, which has its basis on the racial characteristics of an individual with the ending actions, has a negative view basis. Nevertheless, for an act to be termed as racism there must be the power vested on the individual to oppose this act. This makes slavery especially of blacks to be termed as bigotry.
However, despite the controversy in the in the definition of the term, there is no controversy in stating that there is still controversy in the society that we are living today. According to Terry, the problem becomes even more complex because of ignorance by the public in the issue. Many try to believe that this practice is no longer in existence while, in the real sense, this is the case. Many people are part of the problem as they may be discriminating against other people’s rights. The discriminating people then go round saying how open-minded they are, which adds to the problem. This happens in schools, homes and even the community. In the discussion of this issue, there is the use of an interview conducted on Terry Ferguson and the use of literature materials.
There is the belief that racism is on the blacks alone, but this is a misconception. According to Terry, there are jokes about the Chinese people, which is a form of racism. This leads to the conclusion that racism can be to any one of a different race through different ways such as jokes. There is racism against the Western Representatives in the non-Western nations especially in the nations of East Africa. In Tanzania, there is the reference of Europeans as cannibals using their native word ‘mchinja-chinja’ meaning bloodsucker (Brown and Miles, p.21). This shows that racism is available in society as a tradition and culture as in this society there are words that are discriminatory in nature. This means that there is racism at the community level. The community has even come up with a name that is useful in their aim of racially describing those that are white.
The culture at the national level promotes racism as in some countries. An excellent example is in Sweden. Early in the year, Minister for Culture of the Swedish nation by the name Lena Adelsohn, in her promotion of culture decided to cut a cake. The cutting of this cake by the Minister was in public. The cake is in shape of a black woman with funny decorations around her mouth and her eyes (www.vice.com). The cutting of the cake is a mockery to the black people as the Minister laughs as she cuts the cake while there is the taking of photos by those present. In other words, this is racism from the representatives of the government. This shows that there are cases of racism even in the open eyes of the public in some nations such as Sweden. This shows that the nation of Sweden is open about it that they are not even afraid to hide it in this time of the century. This means that there is racism even from the government.
According to Terry, there is the racism vice in the workplace. There is plenty of denial on this issue, but it is there. Evidence is there especially during lunch hours in the Cafeteria. There is the grouping that occurs because of nationality and race, but not language as earlier thought. There is the illustration of a case of racism in the United States, where many assume that there is no racism in this nation. In the year 1992, there was the forced resignation of an individual by the name Raymond Christian. Raymond is an African American who was in the American nation and rose to serve the United States Marine Corps. Based on education, he quit his job and after for three years joined the United States Postal Service. He was under target at the work place until his decision to resign (Christian, p.189). This is an illustration of how racing is in the workplace because of the skin color of an individual. However, racism does not end in the resignation or firing of the individual, but even in the seeking of justice by the individual. According to Christian, he had tried to seek audience with the judiciary system to have the issue addressed to no success.
Even in public places, there are reports of racism. In the interview, the interviewee experienced racism at its highest in a street. Terry was walking to the video store to return some videos he had picked. However, he did not get to his destination because of the intervention of the police. According to the police, it is illegal to walk on that street, but the whites do walk on this street on a daily basis. This is a case of discrimination in the use of social amenities provided by the state. These social amenities are useful to the public in general, but in the above case, there is evidence of restriction of use to some individuals because of the reason of the difference in the skin color and even in other cases the origin of the individual.
In the above cases, there is evidence that there are cases of racism in the workplace, in the culture and at national level. However, there is the area where there the problem of racism lies in plenty. In schools, the issue of racism is a significant issue that should be under consideration. An example is a student by the name Charissa, who was a 16-year-old student. Charissa wrote an article on the difficulties that minority students go through as they attempt to quench the thirst for education. Her white colleagues on their part said that this was an attempt to attract attention and nothing more (Donaldson, p.1). In schools, the level of racism is high, and there is the consideration that this vice is higher in schools as compared to other areas. The effect that racism has on children in schools is extremely disturbing. There is the lowering of a child’s self-esteem. In schools, racism is not only from fellow students. There are instances where administrators and teachers ignore the students that are not from their race. There is inequality through the little allocation to some students, biased curricula and texts, harsh sanctions such as detention and suspension and there is the lower expectation of the teacher towards some students (Donaldson, p.5).
According to Terry, there is nothing can be done to correct this situation as it would have been implemented by now. There is the formulation of law to ensure that individuals are hired, but this menace is still hindering the hiring of the blacks. However, there is the solution that Terry suggests that is the ability of black culture liberating itself in music, movie and the media industry. Although not as effective, other solutions contribute significantly in the reduction of racism. Interracial marriage is a temporary solution to this menace (Bonilla-Silva, p.114). This is because of the incorporation of races into others, which leads to the acceptance of a race by the other. Government intervention is another measure to curb racism (Bonilla-Silva, p.114). There is the consideration of the government as not doing enough to reduce if not to minimize this menace. There can be the establishment of tougher rules by the government and heavy penalties to anyone who violates the laws against racism. The government may educate the public on the harm caused by racism.
It is evident that racism is all over the world and is not about to end unless some drastic measures are taken. There is no race that is safe from racism as there is racism even to the white as in Tanzania where they have reference as cannibals. This is racism in a community basis. On the national level, there is racism in nations such as Sweden. At the work places, there is this menace where individuals face stigma until they resign from work. There is evidence by how people group during lunch hours. The hardest hit area is the schools where students face stigma. However, the governments all other the world may be stricter to enforce laws, than they are now that are against the practice and educate citizens on the harm resulting from racism.
Christian, R. C. It Still Exists Today- a True Story of Racism in the United States Postal Services: The Story Oklahoma Did Not Want Told. Author House, 2005. Print.
Donaldson, Karen B. McLean. Through students' eyes: combating racism in United States schools. Westport, Conn.: Praeger, 1996. Print.
Haynes, Gavin. "What Is the Most Racist Country in Europe? | VICE." VICE | United States | The Definitive Guide to Enlightening Information. N.p., n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2012. .
Miles, Robert, and Malcolm Brown. Racism. 2nd ed. London ; New York: Routledge, 2003. Print.
Silva, Eduardo. Racism without racists color-blind racism and the persistence of racial inequality in contemporary America. 3rd ed. Lanham (Md.): Rowman & Littlefield Pub., 2010. Print.