Racism against white people: Does it even exist?
Can minority groups be racist?
If so,is the racism perpetrated by minority groups and its individuals less problematic than racism from white people?
My video response on the topic:
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Since scientists have stated that race is a social construct (not biological) I’ve heard people say that the concept of racism isn’t so important or it doesn’t really exist since we are all one race, the human race. Not true at all. Even if race and ethnicity are a social construct it does not diminish racism and prejudice because it does not diminish the historical and cultural experiences based on those constructs.
White privilege and reverse racism are common terms thrown about especially in the wake of last year’s Academy Awards (#oscarssowhite), the Black Lives Matter movement, All Lives Matter slogan, and the most recent cases involving blacks being shot by white police officers.
White people are being told that there is no such thing as racism against white people. I can’t agree with this statement but the issue is certainly more complex. I see racism, which includes the concepts of oppression and prejudice, in two distinct categories: individual and institutional.
When it comes to individual racism, anyone can be racist against anyone. Racism is the belief that a category of racial/ethnically defined people are inferior for whatever reasons. A white person can be racist towards a black person. A black person can inflict racism against white people. A Hispanic can be racist towards an Asian. An Asian can dish out racism against white people. By definition, racism is the same thing, no matter whom it comes from.
Therefore it is absolutely possible for racism against white people to occur. Prejudice and discrimination knows no boundaries. I certainly do not agree with the theory that individuals from minority groups cannot be racist or prejudiced simply because they are a minority group and have suffered abuse and degrees of persecution. Logically, it should not give them any type of free pass if one is seriously against the idea of racism.
Where it becomes more complex is when you bring history and context into the equation as well as the idea of racism as an institutional concept. This is where it can be difficult to argue that racism against white people exists.
Institutional racism is a system where a dominant race inflicts oppression against other racial/ethnic groups and benefits from that oppression. Society does not operate on a platform where every racial/ethnic group has equal power, opportunity and status.
If we are to look at this through a US context and history, it is white people who have the mass majority of power, opportunity and status. Whites have not faced segregation, enslavement and colonization. Whites have not faced the levels of poverty and police brutality that blacks have. This is the reality of institutional racism.
It is technically possible for white people to face institutional racism but it would have to be within a context where whites are the not the dominant race and have less power and status and are being oppressed by another group. Can you think of an example?
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