Re: Is white racism nec. all bad?

Robert Hartman (
19 Apr 1995 01:43:03 GMT

In article <3mu9rr$>, Gary Strand <> wrote:

> ... Jews don't blame all their problems on ~3000 years
> of anti-Semitism. Why should I take your opinions of 400 years of racism
> more seriously than theirs?

This is a small point, but a significant one.

There is a large difference between the forms of oppression that
Jews endured in Europe and the oppression that Africans endured in
the Americas. By and large, Jews were not systematically stripped
of their native culture. They were expelled and harrassed, but
thier families were left intact--as were their customs.

This is not true for Africans in America. Their native languages were
suppressed. Their native customs were suppressed. Their children were
taken from them. Their identities were taken from them.

The experience of Africans in America is on the order of a 400-year
holocaust. In the South in particular, there was a systematic,
intentional, violent attempt to reduce blacks to robots--to helpless
and hopeless slavery _forever._

It seems to me, given the problems that many children of holocaust
survivors have to deal with, that overcoming such oppression takes
longer than a generation and a half. It took three generations for
the Irish and Italians to assimilate, and most of them could pass
as WASPs. Africans obviously can't.

> ... It's *easy* to
> blame everything on white racism, but that's a copout and not realistic. I
> am not so sure that you're as anti-racist as you claim to be. I think I'd
> rather have an overt racist spitting on me than someone who claims that I'm
> a poor victim and treats me like a baby. Is it better to break a spine or
> believe someone doesn't have one?

These are some fine choices here. How about recognizing the evil in white
racism and recognizing the evil in black-on-black fratricide as well?

How about if the white people work on the issue of white racism and the
black people work on the issue of black-on-black fratricide?

How about if the white people show some class by working on white
racism regardless of whether black people appear to be working on
black-on-black fratricide? After all, the fact that some black
people may mistreat each other is no excuse for white people to
continue mistreating them, is it?