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Old 05-16-2014, 07:33 AM
 
Location: Up North in God's Country
670 posts, read 760,916 times
Reputation: 987

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We all have a tendency to be ethnocentric. We need to be aware of this so that we can intelligently discuss these issues. I've always enjoyed learning about other cultures and races. My own family is multi-racial. Two of my siblings married people from other races. Our parents taught us to be "colorblind." I can honestly say that no one in my family is racist or prejudiced...including the relatives who are "minorities"...at least they are minorities in the U.S.

Research has shown that young children do not tend to be racist...unfortunately, they learn to be this way at home.

 
Old 05-16-2014, 07:47 AM
 
869 posts, read 929,399 times
Reputation: 1355
Quote:
Originally Posted by erjunkee View Post
I recall once having heard a quote from Spike Lee, commenting on this.

I'm obviously paraphrasing, but he said something to the effect that:

"African American's cannot be racist b/c they do not have power."

He further went on to give a rather interesting explanation of this. He states that because of the deep connection between money , race, and power, there is very little in terms of being able to separate one's influence in a person without the other. You can only be racist if you have money/power, and some ability to exert influence with that combination.

Unfortunately, I don't think he ever explained he reasoning behind those who are poor and embrace racist, bigoted viewpoints.

But, I thought it was a pretty interesting thought.
Spike Lee has a personal net worth of tens of millions of dollars. His fame allowed him to gain hundreds of thousands of followers on his Twitter account. During the Zimmerman trial, an elderly white couple was forced to temporarily leave their home after Lee broadcast their address on said Twitter account as the home of George Zimmerman. The couple was subjected to death threats because of it. To argue that the ability to force someone to abandon their home on fear of death does not constitute power over them is asinine. The fact that he, as an African American, was able to do it to a white couple completely destroys his argument that it isn't possible.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 08:17 AM
 
Location: Blue Ridge
20,894 posts, read 22,678,977 times
Reputation: 8636
Quote:
Can minorities be racist?
Yes, but many times it's subtle that many don't notice it or the signs of it happening. I have seen it more common than not in the service industry. When I speak other languages, I speak them in a non-American school taught dialect with the correct accents in place. So to list a few examples would be when I go down to Florida. When I speak English the service is generally acceptable, but when I speak Spanish there is a massive upgrade in service ( and food usually has more flavor). Another example is when I go into a Hallal restaurant where many of the employees speak some level of Arabic, I usually order in English. If I find the service lacking in some way, I speak in Arabic and all of sudden they go into a exceed expectation modes. In both scenarios the attitudes change. So does it exist? Yes. Is it the same, No.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 08:29 AM
 
Location: Someplace Wonderful
5,170 posts, read 3,727,230 times
Reputation: 2546
Moderator cut: against Great Debates guidelines

Once upon a time I studied anthropology, and once upon a time I was awarded Departmental Honors and a degree in Sociology and Anthropology. In 1971 !!!!!

We ALL identify with groups, however we define them. Color, Ethnicity, familial ties, neighborhood, employer, union membership, and the list goes on. I could cite examples of severe racism that exist today, racism (ethnicity) SO strong that one dare not wander too far from one's village to risk murder and being eaten by the members of that tribe next door.

OF COURSE "RACISM" can be practiced by anyone, any member of any group.

The whole point of America is that we strive to overcome this negative basis of our evolution by embracing higher values, those being personal liberty, common values that embrace us all as equals under the law.

My advice is that we quit focusing on the negative, and start focusing on freedom and equality. Shout down the racists wherever we can but for goodness sake stop our whining like five year olds pointing at our sibling and saying "Mom, s/he started it" and getting back to the real business of celebrating what we have and what we need to do to perpetuate it to the next generation.

Last edited by Oldhag1; 05-16-2014 at 12:03 PM.. Reason: If you have an issue with a topic then ignore the thread, don't comment on it in a post
 
Old 05-16-2014, 08:32 AM
 
854 posts, read 1,036,333 times
Reputation: 949
Quote:
Originally Posted by MissSoBelle View Post

Research has shown that young children do not tend to be racist...unfortunately, they learn to be this way at home.
Depends what you mean by "racist". I don't think children are born to hate but I think some of them probably do favor people who look more similar to their own family. Different studies have shown different results.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 09:48 AM
 
517 posts, read 1,412,884 times
Reputation: 564
Quote:
Can minorities be racist?
The answer is obviously yes, going by dictionary definitions and the English language. You could be in a minority of one and still hate a particular race. Whether the race being hated has done you wrong or you believe discriminates against you is another matter and another topic altogether.

I think the most recent example of non-white racism is probably rapper Jay Z. He's getting a reputation for racism against whites. As ever these stories are a grey area, but wouldn't anyone in their right mind do everything they could to refute such stories? Would you go out in public wearing a medallion that in any way could be misconstrued as racially offensive?

Jay Z hasn't and I do suspect he's a racist as the examples grow.

Quote:
Rapper Jay-Z has been caught up in a race scandal following allegations security at his BRIT Awards after party on Tuesday (16Feb10) banned white people from entering the VIP area.

The 'Empire State Of Mind' superstar threw a lavish bash at Merah nightclub in London following his Best International Male Solo win at the ceremony.

But the night descended into chaos after fights broke out amid people scrambling to get close to the star.

And the atmosphere turned even nastier after security personnel working on the doors of the VIP room allegedly refused to allow any white people into the area, while letting black partygoers straight through, according to Britain's Daily Star newspaper.
www.thehothits.com/news/

Quote:
Is Jay Z Racist? Rapper Wears Medallion Of Group That Posits ‘White Men Are The Devil,’ Five Percent Nation

Jay Z may be known for his exceptional fashion sense, among his many talents, but his latest sartorial flourish sparked suspicion he may be racist.

On Tuesday during a Brooklyn Nets game, the 44-year-old rapper wore a medallion with a symbol on it that is associated with the Five Percent Nation, an offshoot of the Nation of Islam that believes that “white men are the devil.”

When asked if the coaster-sized medallion featuring the group’s symbol, an eight pointed star with the number 7 inside of it, meant anything to him, Jay Z told The New York Post and reporters at the Barclays Center, “A little bit.”
http://www.ibtimes.com/


Quote:
Originally Posted by j7r6s View Post
Spike Lee has a personal net worth of tens of millions of dollars. His fame allowed him to gain hundreds of thousands of followers on his Twitter account. During the Zimmerman trial, an elderly white couple was forced to temporarily leave their home after Lee broadcast their address on said Twitter account as the home of George Zimmerman. The couple was subjected to death threats because of it. To argue that the ability to force someone to abandon their home on fear of death does not constitute power over them is asinine. The fact that he, as an African American, was able to do it to a white couple completely destroys his argument that it isn't possible.
I didn't know that, but if true that's disgusting.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 09:52 AM
 
Location: Oakland, CA
26,876 posts, read 28,154,657 times
Reputation: 25988
Quote:
Originally Posted by mother mammal View Post
Thank you. And what a peculiar "euphemism" it is. Calling someone a "minority" literally diminishes them and their group.

Years ago I was at the movies and there was a preview for one called "The Indian in the Cupboard." When the title came up on the screen, I immediately started snickering, as did many other people in the theater. A woman seated near me turned to her companion and said, "Why are they laughing?" I and the others started laughing harder.

It was a blatantly insulting portrayal of an Amerindian: not only was he reduced to miniature and portrayed as a toy, he was shut away in a cupboard, and only brought out for the entertainment and enrichment of a little white boy. What was so amusing is that this wouldn't be immediately obvious to everyone (not just the puzzled moviegoer, but the people who made the movie in the first place).

"Minorities," indeed.
That was a popular children's book when I was a kid. I don't think I particularly enjoyed it, but I wasn't very aware of the ways american indians were portrayed (or not portrayed) until much much later. It wasn't even on my radar.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 09:57 AM
 
Location: Buckeye, AZ
25,409 posts, read 14,500,015 times
Reputation: 9215
Yes minorities can be racist. I've heard of blacks being racist to other blacks even. Like blacks who look down on say the Afro-Caribbean blacks.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 10:09 AM
 
Location: Chattanooga, TN
2,773 posts, read 3,678,723 times
Reputation: 4236
Quote:
Originally Posted by boxus View Post
This is really a ridiculous question, I do not see what there is to debate about it; of course minorities can be racist.
As long as thoughtful people have differing opinions it can be debated. This thread started when someone who disagreed with me posted a reasonable response to a post of mine instead of attacking me. I disagreed with response, but it was intelligently worded. After pondering it for a while I took a chance and started a new thread. For the most part the participation in this thread has impressed me with its civil and intelligent responses.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeo123 View Post
I think the argument "minorities can't be racist because they lack the institutional/systemic power" has a flaw that undermines it completely.

It assumes that all interactions only operate on a massive scale. By that definition, no one person could ever be racist because they can't single highhandedly oppress an entire race.
...
An individual can only be racist when you break the interaction down to an individual level. At that level, anyone can be racist if they have the advantage in the situation.
...
You can't rely on the institutional definition of racism unless it works both ways. It would mean no individual ever has that much power, therefore no one person can be racist, and I don't think anyone would argue that point seriously.
At first I agreed with this logic, then spotted the flaw. Even someone with no real individual power can tap into a network of oppressors to gain power over the oppressed. In the novel To Kill A Mockingbird the antagonist Bob Ewell is the most powerless dirt-poor drunkard in existence. But still he is able to tap into the racial power structure and send innocent Tom Robinson to prison for his own crimes. The main counter-argument to my opening statement is that the power structure must exist before racism can exist, and that any individual who taps into that power structure can individually be a racist. By extension, members of the minority can not be individually racist because they have no power structure to tap into. I do not agree with this logic, but it is the logic being used, and it successfully negates your argument.


Quote:
Originally Posted by chuckmann View Post
My advice is that we quit focusing on the negative, and start focusing on freedom and equality. Shout down the racists wherever we can but for goodness sake stop our whining like five year olds pointing at our sibling and saying "Mom, s/he started it" and getting back to the real business of celebrating what we have and what we need to do to perpetuate it to the next generation.
The problem is that many blatant racists claim to be immune to charges of racism because they are members of a certain class. People like Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton have built their entire lives around the ideal of standing up for the racially oppressed. Any case where a minority racially oppresses a member of the majority takes away from their perceived moral high ground, so they use any means they have including double standards and false logic to keep that from happening.
 
Old 05-16-2014, 10:21 AM
 
Location: FROM Dixie, but IN SoCal
3,491 posts, read 5,293,999 times
Reputation: 3737
Quote:
Originally Posted by ovcatto View Post

Irish people are drunks;

Jews are cheap;

Italians are mobsters;

White people are racist;

Those are stereotypes born from racial discrimination
I agree that your examples are stereotypes, but I disagree that they're born from racial discrimination. For one thing, three of your four examples are drawn from the same general population, and the fourth one contains a lot of members -- perhaps a near-majority -- drawn from that same population.

Stereotypes come in all sizes, shapes and descriptions. They are born of broad, sweeping generalizations people make about an entire group or class of people based on some actual (but not universal) characteristics. Everyday examples that I use in corporate training programs include "New Yorkers", "Southern Californians", "Used-Car Salespeople" and "Government Workers."

A key problem in this discussion, and others like it, is the large number of words we use to describe the same general thing. Prejudice, bigotry, chauvinism, racism and other terms are synonyms, or nearly synonyms. Stereotypes feed into, and augment, them.

As far as I am concerned, it matters little what name or term we may assign. What matters is the associated behavior, and the impact of that behavior. So, can minorities be racist/prejudiced/bigoted/chauvinistic/you-name-it? You betcha, because they're all subject to the same shortcomings and faults as any other group of humans.

-- Nighteyes
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