Racist. Does anyone actually understand the meaning of the term?

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SpikeyTeeth
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#1
Report Thread starter 7 years ago
#1
Have we turned into a nation of intellectually challenged and lazy people who are unable to think?

If someone says something negative about another European nation, "racist", even if the 2 parties are the same race.

If some someone says something about a religion, "racist", even if the 2 people are the same race.

If someone makes a comment about a strong smell of food, "racist". Types of dress "racist", types of hat, "racist", set of alphabet character "racist".

Hasn't rather racism become a catchall word for any sort of negative comment about anyone or anything?

Why do people use the term as if it has some significant meaning.

Why are white people prepared to call other white people racist for making a large variety of negative comments while at the same time accepting negative comments about their own race?

It has more significant meaning to say "I am proud to be racist" than to call something racist because the statement forces subsequent questions which are:

a. What is racism?
b. Why do people care about it?
c. What are the impacts?
d. Should people care about it?
e. Does the widespread misuse of the term indicate the spread of the term by a kind if "groupthink"?
f. Have people thought out their views properly?
g. Are people able to think for themselves?



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tengentoppa
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#2
Report 7 years ago
#2
a. Racism is defined by the Oxford English dictionary as "the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics, abilities, or qualities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races", or alternatively as "prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior".

b. People care because it is a nonsensical position to hold, and yet it was a position held by many in the past, and by some today. Racism is not a desirable trait, so when someone is accused of it, it is usually serious.

c. Ethnic cleansing, genocide and the subjugation of races. The holocaust is one well-known example of the practical impact of the belief in one superior race.

d. Yes, for the reasons cited above.

e. I could not say.

f. In many cases, no. I feel that by labeling entirely innocent comments racist and by equating criticisms of religion to racism, and by saying that UKIP are racist, you devalue the term and you prevent intelligent, rational conversation.

g. Yes, I would say so. Although I would also so that we are often a product of our surroundings and can be easily coerced in our thinking.
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carlisomes
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#3
Report 7 years ago
#3
Two meanings that I can see:

- General prejudice towards a given human race
- A belief that one or more races are superior to others

So yes, we do use the terms correctly.

Makes me lulz though when we say anti-Muslim or Christian or French or German or Romanian bias is "racist"...

These are nationality/ethnicities and religions, not races in the strict definition.
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TheTranshumanist
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#4
Report 7 years ago
#4
The term "racist" is overused, but that doesn't mean, as you're suggesting, that we should disregard genuine racism.

Racism is prejudice/discrimination/antagonism directed at people by virtue of their race. I care about it because I want to live in a fair, meritocratic nation, and a nation cannot be fair and meritocratic if people within it are being systematically subjugated by virtue of their race. Even if you don't accept the moral argument against racism, it's still useless, unnecessary and crude to discriminate on the basis of race, and it leads to a whole host of social issues. It's not sensible.

I could go on, but all of this strikes me as being common sense.
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Jacob-C
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#5
Report 7 years ago
#5
The term racist seems to have been employed as a weapon by some in order to silence the views of others. A lot of it recently has been targeted at UKIP and I believe wrongly. I don't believe the party itself is racist but they certainly have members, candidates and elected representatives who are. We, as a society, should be listening to the genuine concerns of some of our members that they have about immigration and its effects; not halting the argument by calling those people racists.
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imtelling
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#6
Report 7 years ago
#6
It's actual definition and the way it is actually used in popular discourse are two different things.

The word has become weaponised by the political left. It's main purpose is to shut down debate and silence those who they disagree with.
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Farm_Ecology
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#7
Report 7 years ago
#7
Those involved in public opinion quickly learned how badly the public responded to racism, and how quick people are to fall in line behind a hatred of a racist for fear of being called racist themselves. It was the next logical step to use it to as a quick way to destroy the image of another entity without having to explain themselves. Trying to defend against the attack is just seen as part of that racism, and attempts to defend the accused is met with more claims of supporting racists.

Racism in the western world is much more rare than given credit for. Many slights and discriminations portrayed as racist are results of cultural elitism and classist differences. It's easy, when faced with a feeling of dislike to blame it on a feature of the other party which tars them in a negative light, the more negative the better.
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Asolare
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#8
Report 7 years ago
#8
I believe a lot of people use racist when they mean xenophobic instead and that we are quite quick to jump to "RACISM!!" in the UK unfortunately. We have the same problem with sexism being screamed left, right and centre.

Although, there is no denying that racism definitely occurs in the UK and sometimes the use is applied correctly, not just tossed around.

Why are white people prepared to call other white people racist for making a large variety of negative comments while at the same time accepting negative comments about their own race?
And yeah this actually drives me insane, but a lot of ignorant ****** don't believe reverse-racism is possible so we have to accept the short end of the stick.
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Snagprophet
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#9
Report 7 years ago
#9
Race is aesthetic. Some could argue that your personality and interests are an aesthetic, but you can't see them with the naked eye. Ultimately it's about judging them for a physical genetic feature, i.e. skin colour, 'big nose', being tall/short, having curly hair etc.

When people start saying religions and cultures and nationalities are races then it gets stupid because all three are entirely subjective and completely made up and aren't tied to your body's appearance (unless your culture is to modify your body). These are all things which define us before we come out of the womb or changes that happen to our body because of our genetic code. I would argue that making fun of someone's genetic disorders are closer to racism than mocking someone's religion or country. I wouldn't necessarily say a disorder is part of your race simply because a lot of these manifest randomly and you may not even pass these genes along.

Now, accent, culture, language, I would accept those as closer xenophobia because these are aspects of us that we can change. I could move to any country or live amongst a different culture and change completely. These are things which were defined as a part of us after we came out of the womb. Our mannerisms are defined here. I'm not saying mocking someone's tradition is always xenophobia, but it is certainly closer to it than it is to racism.

Certain international cultures like religion may not deserve this because of the abundance of the major religions in most countries. There's usually a Christian and Islamic presence in all countries, and to a lesser extent a Hindu and Buddhist one.

All of this comes under the prejudice tagline.
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