Tuesday, February 10, 2004

John has tackled racism as his next major controversial topic. Check out his article and the comments posted.

Good on ya John for tackling this one - many wouldn't dare.

I'd like to offer my 2 cents.

I have an intellectual opinion and a practical application that sometimes differ. My intellect tells me that there is virtually no difference between a person of any colour, or race genetically. Any differences are so minor as to not matter, and are equivalent to other physical characteristic differences. Don't take my word for it here are some web sites that can help - there are more out there I am sure.
Skin Deep and One Blood
My practical application differs when I get confused and look at some one - usually an Asian person - and I think that they are different because I can't understand their language and cultural differences etc.

I think that this is where racism starts, It comes from a mistrust of someone we find difficult to understand, rumours and myths about their race become "true" and soon we are discriminating against them perhaps unintentionally. From there deliberate discrimination becomes full blown racism, taken to its extreme by groups such as the Klu Klux Klan etc.

How to solve it. Simplistically, ignore colour, language and race. My parents never discriminated against other races and I vividly remember times when they took pains to introduce myself and my siblings to foreigners who had appeared in our town and Mum and Dad would bring them home for tea. I learnt fascinating things about them and their home and culture as a small child that I have never forgotten.
In practice removing deep seated misunderstandings and hatreds, often from which feuds and wars have developed (Uganda amd Rwanda for example) is fraught with difficulty, and maybe impossible. Perhaps whole generations must die and forget the past in order for this to happen.

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