Saturday, December 3, 2016

Rant: Race Relations Part 2

There are some on the Left who believe that whites are irredeemable because we have racism in our DNA.  I vehemently reject that bigoted point of view.  Nobody is born racist.  You have to learn that nonsense down the road but you can unlearn it too.  Nelson Mandela agreed with my views and said the following prior to his death in 2013: "No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite."

How does one learn racism?
IMHO, it is a two-fold cause.  First, it can be taught by parents or peers.  Second, it can be learned through negative experiences with a particular group.  While we can debate whether or not "racist" is the appropriate term for those who posted such awful anti-white sentiments on the video that I shared in my last post, there can be no dispute that all races are capable of  hate and bigotry towards others.  Like I said, BOTH sides need to make changes.

Best ways to unlearn it?
While I believe that civil rights and racial equality certainly should be taught in school,by far the most important thing is positive experiences.

My background:
I grew up in a predominantly white middle class neighborhood but was raised by parents who believed strongly in racial equality and taught it to me from a young age.  I did have a few childhood friends who were racist and it turned out that their parents were as well.  Fortunately, I never bought into it.  I also believe that if you had a close friend who is black (which I did), you are less likely to grow up to be racist.

A couple experiences:
One day I was walking down the street on my way to the convenience store and said "Good morning" to a black teenager.  His response was "F--- you white bitch!"  I was HURT.  Let's say this sort of thing happened with regularity or I was a victim of the "Knockout Game" on multiple occasions.  I'll admit that I could fall prey to hatred.  Fortunately, I don't see that happening because the vast majority of blacks that I know are good people.

Another time, I exchanged smiles with an older black woman who worked in my building in Monty.  That's common in the South and I usually don't give it much thought,  This time the smiles got bigger and heartfelt as we got closer.  As I walked by, she said "Come here," then gave me a hug.  You can't help but like that type of person.  Now let's say that I was raised by racist parents or had some negative experiences.  It would be very hard to hold on to those views after meeting and getting to know someone like I just described.

Advice for Whites:
What I hear most on social media is to show more empathy and I agree with that assessment.  Being pro-police and having compassion for the shooting victim's families are NOT mutually exclusive.  You can say to simply comply with orders and you'll be okay and that's certainly true.  However, after the fact when emotions run high, those words can be hurtful especially if a person lost a close friend or family member to violence, which is common in the inner-city.  Regardless of a person's criminal history, it is tragic to see anyone killed at such a young age.  I met a man who was once a drug dealer but experienced a conversion to Christianity and is now a pastor.  Some people change.  I would also encourage participation in outreach projects in the inner city.  If there's anything I should add to this, let me know.

Advice for Blacks:
Here's where I could get in trouble.  Again, I have compassion for victims of police brutality but IMHO the biggest problems are absentee fathers and gang bangers.  You can say that police violence hurts more because they are paid to "serve and protect" and I understand your point.  However, some in BLM feel that it's reached epidemic proportions and that's simply not true.  The fact is that blacks are 90 times more likely to be killed by other blacks than police.  Also, when you factor in encounters with law enforcement, there is no real evidence that blacks are targeted.  Chants for dead cops, looting and throwing rocks at traffic are completely unacceptable regardless of difficult life experiences.  

Across all races, you are 8-9 times more likely to drop out of school or end up in prison if you grow up without a father.  The black illegitimacy rate is currently at 72%.  If it would drop below 50%, crime will fall dramatically and educational achievement would also improve with more parental involvement and discipline.  Profiling will also diminish with time.  As an aside, white crime has ticked up in recent years as the illegitimacy rate has increased.   There is a school of thought that negative behaviors such as bad language and horseplay during  class instruction should be acceptable as "part of their culture."  To me, this implies that we are to expect that certain people cannot behave in a respectful manner.  This is a racist point of view.  End the soft bigotry of low expectations. Do not tolerate negative behaviors in the name of cultural relativism.  No ethnic group is inherently superior or inferior to another.

Advice for all:
Make an extra effort to be kinder than necessary to people who are different from you.  Don't give anyone a reason to hate and seek to change the hearts and minds of those that have fallen prey to it.  What makes me sad is that there is an element within BLM that seeks to re-segregate and there are calls for separate housing on college campuses.  What would Martin Luther King say about that?  He had a dream that we could all sit down together as sisters and brothers.

Across all races, if you do the following, your odds of success increase dramatically for both yourself and your children:
1. Stay in school
2. Secure stable employment
3. Don't have kids out of wedlock
4. Don't use drugs

Again, I welcome comments on this but keep it civil.

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