Racism, Prejudice, and Experience

The following are from the American Heritage Dictionary at Yahoo.

bigotry
NOUN: The attitude, state of mind, or behavior characteristic of a bigot; intolerance.

racism
NOUN:

  1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others.
  2. Discrimination or prejudice based on race.

prejudice

NOUN:

    1. An adverse judgment or opinion formed beforehand or without knowledge or examination of the facts.
    2. A preconceived preference or idea.
  1. The act or state of holding unreasonable preconceived judgments or convictions. See Synonyms at predilection.
  2. Irrational suspicion or hatred of a particular group, race, or religion.
  3. Detriment or injury caused to a person by the preconceived, unfavorable conviction of another or others.

The above definitions are in place so that you will understand what I’m talking about. I don’t care what you define those terms as, the following essay can only be based on the terms as described above. Any other interpretation or removal of context is your problem and not mine. Any references to this article should include a complete link to this article and these definitions!

All this came about because an idiot named Imus got fired. Now, I don’t really agree with what he said, I don’t like him very much at all. The problem is that someone can get fired from an opinion news/radio show because of an opinion. He has the right to believe whatever he wants to believe. He even, in America, has the right to say what he wants to say. In my personal opinion, what he said was not even racist. Now, if none of the Rutgers Women’s Basketball team has tattoos, then he might have been making a slanderous statement. Nappy hair, that’s an opinion. ‘Ho’s’, well, I have a problem with that word in and of itself. I seriously doubt that any of those women are being paid for sexual favors, so that too is slanderous or possibly libel, since it was a public broadcast. However, NONE of those statements is racist.

In fact, based on my interpretation of the definitions above. The racist comments and actions are on the part of almost everyone EXCEPT Imus. Since he didn’t really say anything racist, then his firing at the urging of African American Organizations is the result of racism… and vengeance. I posit that if Imus had said the same thing about an all white player team… none of the African American Organizations would have done anything at all. He still would have been wrong… and he still would have gotten some nasty letters… but he would not have been fired.

It my personal belief that Al Sharpton is the ultimate racist. He never attacks African Americans who use the word ‘nigger’. A few hours of watching stand-up at Comedy Central will let you here that word enough… all from African American comics. If a white comic ever said it, he would never work again. Rev Sharpton (by the way, who gets appointed a minister at age 10?!?!?) believes that his race gives him power to force things to happen. Unfortunately, he does get things to happen, by using his race (a persecuted minority) as a weapon.

Now, to answer everyone’s question. I am not a racist. I am not prejudiced. I am not a member of the KKK. Here’s where the experience comes in. I live in an area of Texas that is mostly minority. I have some dear friends who are African American. I known plenty of people of other races that I would want to spend ten minutes in a room with. I have worked for and with people of every race. I have taught people of every race. So please understand that I make no statements that I have not considered at length with (at least) years of experience with.

I do not like the modern black culture. The modern black culture (as I experience it, you, living in a different area may experience it differently) is one of implied racism, violence, hatred, bigotry, prejudice, material and personal gratification at no expense, and intensely offensive attitudes towards all who are different. I’m being perfectly real here guys. That’s how it is in Southeast Texas. My hatred of one particular culture is a hatred for specific reasons. Intolerance and racism is their hatred… not mine.

A local high school (the one that I taught at, though I suspect it happens elsewhere too) has several ‘gangs’ on campus. The Hispanics hate the blacks, the blacks hate the Hispanics, the Asians hate everyone and (with respect to the Kingston Trio) “I don’t like anyone very much.” These hatreds are NOT based on any reason other than they are different. That’s the definition of prejudice. In fact, based on most of what I could get out of some of the kids, most of the fighting is based on stupid 5 year old crap. “He hit so-and-so with a spit ball. So we jumped him after school. Then his people jumped in.” Blah, blah, blah…

My favorite incident occurred when a student went to the principle to accuse me of being racist for trying to make him complete his assignment. Of course, the principle was black so we had a ‘talk’ about my attitude. I finally said fine, if he didn’t do his assignments, I would give him a failing grade. Nothing racist about it. No work to grade, therefore no grade. It really bothered me that an accusation by a failing student was more valid to her than a teacher who had been at the school longer than she had been. Because of race.

Well, I’m tired of this. If anyone gets pissed off, I’ll happily discuss it in an open forum. Just be rational and not have anything more than an emotional, knee-jerk reaction to a post you didn’t bother to read all the way through.

Let the flame wars begin.

P.S.  Here’s an article about this particular school.  As of this writing, they haven’t determined the agents involved.  But everyone knows it was the seniors.  Every year, about this time, the seniors do something like this.  This was the worst by far, but it’s the same stuff… sigh.

Vandalism

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~ by OgreMkV on April 13, 2007.

3 Responses to “Racism, Prejudice, and Experience”

  1. you said it like it is and you’re not the only one tired of it.

  2. In your essay, you stated that due to definition of racism and prejudice ABOVE that his statement was not racist. When you refer to any African American as a “nappy head” it is racist not an opion. The texture of our hair is different from whites and it should have not been said at all. Yes, he did get fired and he desevred it. Also, you implied that “his firing at the urging of African American Organizations is the result of racism… and vengeance.” You claim you are not a racist but this comment itself seems racist. You cannot blame the orginazation for his firing. He did not have the right to say that. African American’s have a long history, and we have struggled to be free. Today the struggle still occurs for us,and if you are not an African American who hasn’t EXPERIENCED racism,there is no way you can determine what racism is due to a definition given.

  3. The point of having a definition of racism is so that everyone understands what I mean when I say the word. If you mean something else, then you need to say what your definition is.

    If Don Imus had said what he said about a non-black team… then no one would have complained about it. That is blatant racism… the discrimination based on race. In this case, indeed in most cases, the racism card is used by African Americans when they don’t get their way. That statement is fact, plain and simple. It may not be the case where you live, but it is here. That is my personal experience… in the area that I live in. You can say what you want about me being racist… I’m not.

    I’m not saying that racism doesn’t exist. I am saying that some things are not racist, because there is fact and evidence to back up the statement.

    For example, I live in Port Arthur, Texas.
    http://www.city-data.com/city/Port-Arthur-Texas.html
    [Yep, I’m a minority here.]

    There have been four murders so far this year…
    http://www.southeasttexaslive.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=19260090&BRD=2287&PAG=461&dept_id=512588&rfi=6

    in a town of about 60,000 people. All four murder victims have been black and all the people currently under suspicion for the crimes are black. Is that racist?

    Finally, I would disagree with you about your final statement. I know full well what racism is because it has happened to me (you did read the entire article right?). I have been told that I couldn’t have the job because a black person had applied for it and the owners had to give it to them. I have seen a cop let a black person go free and a arrest a white person for the same thing. That’s racism pure and simple.

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