Expanding Racism Racism during Hard Times when Racism Emerges Grow of Racism

Racism is fueled by people honestly thinking they are doing the right thing. They simply do not realize that policy is racist, when they themselves are friendly, kind and courteous to individuals of every hue.

When people study history very carefully they see patterns wherein the racism may still linger long after institutions such as slavery are gone. Racism occurs in policy that collectively favors rich, elitist people. Most of these are still male, but then that is another “ism,” that is slow to reform.

As a case in point, many editorials have pointed out how often and how severely pundits and politicians attack Barack Obama the person, in ways they have historically never done to a president before. No one has ever shouted out “You Lie,” to a former president, or commented that knowing, or meeting, or even admiring another African American, suggests that any particular white president is, therefore, a secret, terrorist Muslim, socialist or radical.

The growth of racism has much more to do with human nature, and scape-goating, than with hatred of a minority, particularly in difficult times such as recession. People believe they get themselves off the hook for any responsibility for any negative situation by finger pointing. They will find ways to blame the loss of family values, immigrants, blacks and other minorities and so on. People will always look for someone to blame that is not themselves. That is human nature. Denial is a human defense mechanism that is unconscious most of the time.

Racism also grows out of control when it is not overt. Because human beings no longer own human beings, people are smugly satisfied that they are not racist. They look to such progress and feel pride. To take away some of that pride is threatening to their sense of self, and to the denial all beings live in, in order to survive an unjust world.

When people feel all their success is due to their own hard work, and not the exploitation of others, they are not going to be accepting of the idea that someone was exploited, or that some continue to be exploited in modern times. They know that they work hard, so they are not going to see that someone else may be having to work even harder. They are told, often by those with much to gain from exploitation, that there are more minorities scamming the welfare system, even though statistics show repeatedly that more whites collect welfare than any other “race.”

Policies that penalize the impoverished are very slow to change, for example. Also slow to change is racism that allows young men to live in violence and “gangsta” life styles.

Things like equal health care and great schools are always going to be hard won for the most vulnerable to injustice in public policy. Such policies are not usually examples of overt and very visible racism. Those people that are overly represented by over-crowded prison populations are not going to be seen as victims, but as examples of how such minorities are “proven” to be more troublesome. And so it goes.

Because there is now a social stigma attached to saying the “N” word, people do not use it. However, it is hotly debated every time someone does use it, and it causes far more conflict, then saying the “B” word, or “S” word in regard to a person.

People, most of the time, are not fully realizing that they have some sense of superiority that is unspoken. If oppression is seen as real, then it takes a real man or woman to stand up and say: “This exists, at least in part, due to all of us. All of us must solve it.”