Brendan O'Neill on "Racism"

"The belief that racism lurks everywhere, in every nook of society, in every Leavers' heart, in every white person's historically determined sense of entitlement, in every movie that doesn't have 50% black actors, in every university curriculum that has more white philosophers than black ones, in the mind of every white kid who twerks or wears dreadlocks, in every policeman's soul, in every poor neighbourhood that isn't cock-a-hoop about the arrival of more migrants -- that's the true prejudice of our age. The idea that people are innately, unwittingly racist, the overblown concern with racism, the incessant hunt for racism -- all of this now plays the role racism once played, in differentiating the racially enlightened from the racially backward."

4 comments:

  1. Yeah, there is some contradiction between

    1) witch-hunting for racist behaviour as if it is a rare but abnormal and dangerous phenomenon

    2) assuming racism is inherent and common to all people

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  2. I don't think that's what they think ... at least, not when pressed on it. They simply re-define "racism" so that it doesn't depend on individual ill-will. A friend recently posted on Facebook, in so many words, "Forget about the dictionary definition of 'racism' because, well, proscriptions for 'proper english' like dictionaries WERE CREATED BY A RACIST SYSTEM."

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    Replies
    1. They seem to oscillate: they will forward something like O'Neill describes UNTIL pressed on it, and then fall back on "systematic" racism.

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    2. They seem to oscillate: they will forward something like O'Neill describes UNTIL pressed on it, and then fall back on "systematic" racism.

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