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Essay on Racism

Exploitation, Domination, and Liberation

by Spadecaller

Racism has infected humanity for many centuries. It surrounds us -- overt and violent, inconspicuous and passive,  and terribly destructive to oppressors and those it targets.  Racism kills hundred of thousands of humans each year and makes the lives of millions miserable and desperate.  People demonstrate racism through active, violent, destructive ways and others by passive acts of omission and exclusionary policies.  The oppressors of racism denigrate, vilify, and dehumanize their targets to justify their attitudes and conduct.  Exploitive societies have adopted racism to control and maintain power by dividing their populations and abating their influence by promoting hurt, confusion, bitterness, and distrust.  A divided population is one that is more easily controlled.                                                

Historical evidence clearly shows how racism can be used to mobilize large segments of the population for the purpose of fighting wars.  To keep people locked into their patterns of hate prevents the disadvantaged and poorer working class members of society from uniting and developing alliances that would cross racial barriers.  Racism is an internal human condition that is extremely vulnerable to outside manipulation.  Politicians have often relied on this phenomenon to help them maintain and to seek positions of authority.

Those who want to resist the effects of racism in their lives must find allies who can help them from falling into isolation.  With connections to others, there is greater power to resist the manipulation and to prevent the effects of racism.  When young people are exposed to extremely racist environments, the damage is extensive.  Often it is enough to drive that person to assuming the role of an oppressor.  The amount of hurt and damage to cause a person to make that conversion is often unfathomable.  The only hope for oppressors to liberate themselves from their extreme condition is finding allies who will not judge them.

All members of any society that suffer from racism eventually become infected also.  At birth, all people are free from its effects; they begin life wanting to find alliances and connections with everyone.  However, as learning and socialization advances, the immense collection of racist patterns infiltrates the child?s mind.  The child is exposed to a host of people infected by varying degrees of racism.  Though every child battles against the toxic effects of racism, eventually they get overrun.  If a child is fortunate to have  a role model who is battling against their confusion from racism, they will develop a better picture of humanity and feel connected to others without as much restriction.

Guilt and rationalization are an oppressor's symptoms; guilt tells them they do not deserve help and rationalization blames the target for their racism.  For an oppressor to find liberation is a difficult undertaking in this world.  Only the best therapists, psychologists, and highly spiritually developed people have the ability to withstand the ugliness of extreme racism.  Oppressors need to discover that they too are victims of racism and that they never really wanted to adopt that role in the first place.  They need to discover that it was forced upon them at an early age and it is unfair of them to continue blaming themselves.  They need to be sincerely praised for seeking help and for being open to the prospect of change.  In addition, they need to know that there is a better life awaiting them-- one that is free from feeling the burden of hatred, the need for vengeance, and free from self-hatred.  It is a formidable task, but when there is willingness, understanding, and compassion prodigious results can occur.