Chapter Two. 2nd Step to Becoming An Anti-Racist
2nd Step to becoming an anti-racist: You must understand what a racist person is.
What is a racist?
Again, I must remind you, hatred isn’t the cause of racism. In fact, hatred is merely one result produced by the elements of racism. Therefore, an important fact to remember is, racists don’t have to hate the subject of their racism, in order to do harm or injustice. Also be reminded that my purpose is to point out enough about racism, so you’ll know it when you see it; and you’ll have the knowledge to un-do racism in your personal environment. Personally, I believe there is only one race; that’s humans. In my sometimes-naive description of what I think the world should be like, everyone is part of the race of humans. When I say everyone, I mean that includes every man, woman and child, regardless of the color of their skin. Defining the humans as a race should be a no brainer. However, race and racism in America is more complicated than skin color. Like I mentioned earlier, when it comes to talking about racism and race and how we view ourselves in relationship to racism, our feelings and our rights to our opinions have caused the facts regarding race and racism to get lost in the mix. When it comes to racism, most people fall under one of the following perspectives. It doesn’t matter whether you are an individual, a company or corporation, or an institution; you are racist, non-racist or anti-racist. There is a very distinctive difference between these three perspectives.
A racist person uses their race-based powers to mistreat people based on their race or as in America, skin color. A racist person uses his or her race-based powers to control and/or destroy the lives of people who do not have the same color skin he or she has. A racist person believes their own race is superior to all other races. A racist person either doesn’t believe or doesn’t acknowledge facts which disprove the beliefs of superiority. This means they often misinterpret facts to fit their beliefs. Stick with me on this point, white racist and racists of color are not the same. To be honest, according to our definition of racism, people of color aren’t and can’t be truly racist. They can be prejudiced, mean or hateful. However, people of color normally don’t possess, except in very rare occasions, the ‘power’ it takes to be a true racist. This country doesn’t give people of color the power to be true racists. Yes, there are a few wealthy Black people who, from the outside, look as though they have power, but, they have very little, if any. On the physical level someone of color may possess temporary power over a less physical White person. But that power is quickly extinguished when the law gets involved. In the past few years, we have seen White people use their power to call the police on people of color and especially Black people. They do so for the obvious reason of having the power to do so.
Many times, in situations which involve the police, Black people and people of color don’t have the sustaining power of law enforcement on our side. In a lot of the cases made public where a White person calls the police on a Black person or person of color, the Black person or person of color isn’t doing anything wrong. However, the White person knows the dangerous possibilities in which a Black person or person of color can find themselves when the police are called. Anyone who doesn’t understand this danger, is either lying, or they aren’t playing with a full deck. White people who do this get the satisfaction of watching the police wrestle Black folk or people of color to the ground or worse. Therefore, calling the police on black people or people of color, has become popular. It satisfies the ego of racists and gives them a sense of superiority and power. Because America doesn’t train law enforcement well enough in the area of racism, and because a lot of law enforcement officers have biases against people of color, racist civilians know they can set it up so law enforcement can hurt or kill black people or people of color. If neither police, nor the lying white racist, must pay any consequences for their actions, this form of racism will continue. Mean or hateful people of color don’t have enough power to pull off this brand of execution. Racist people must be part of a racist system for racism to work. If the systems operating in America didn’t accept or associate with racist acts, racism would not be able to operate or exist as it does.
Here’s an example of how racism works and how white people’s power trumps the legal innocence of Black people. It also proves why people of color aren’t truly racists. In March 2019, a black woman called 911 and the police ended up wrestling her to the ground. Here’s the story as written in an article, in Slate Magazine, written by Molly Olmstead:
A South Florida police officer has been suspended after a video circulated on social media showing him putting a black woman in a headlock after she called to report a crime, according to local media reports.
Dyma Loving has said she had called 911 on March 5 after getting into an argument with her neighbor, who waved a shotgun at her. She told reporters later that the neighbor had called her and her friend “whores.” She said the two had ignored it at first, but her friend, Adrianna Green, eventually threw a potted plant toward the neighbor’s yard. The neighbor, a white man, then allegedly pulled out a shotgun and said he would “shoot my burnt black-ass face off my neck,” she told the Miami New Times.
When police showed up, they interviewed the two women. One officer, later identified by the department as Alejandro Giraldo, “started interrogating us like we were the suspects,” Loving told the New Times. Loving said she asked him if she could go to her friend’s house to charge her phone and call her children. “He kept telling me I needed to calm down, but I was so scared at that moment,” she told the New Times.
In the video, which was filmed by Green and appears to start after she asks Giraldo to go to her friend’s house, one of the officers can be heard saying, “she needs to be corrected if anything.” Loving, visibly upset, asks the police officers, “Why do I have to be corrected when my life was just threatened and my daughter’s sick? I just want to go to the store to charge my phone.”
Giraldo takes a step toward her. He then seizes her arm and appears to push her toward the fence behind her as Green protests that she hadn’t done anything.
Loving repeatedly tells the officers not to touch her, and as another officer holds her wrists, Giraldo forcefully tries to handcuff her. Loving, though shouting does not appear to physically resist. Then, Giraldo yanks his arm away, and—as Green repeatedly cries out, “Why are you doing this?”—places her in a headlock and wrestles her to the ground. The three officers then pin her to the ground.
The Black woman in this situation wasn’t a racist. I brought up her situation to show why a person of color would find it difficult to be a true racist. We don’t have the sustaining power of law enforcement on our side. The man pointing the gun at these Black women had all the power, simply by virtue of having white skin. He got the satisfaction of watching the police wrestle her to the ground. This is the reason calling the police on people of color, has become so popular. It satisfies the ego of racists.
Racist companies, corporations, churches, government, media and the educational system
Because of the power to legislate, interpret and implement rules and laws; governments, politicians and institutions such as companies, corporations, churches and the educational system can also be racist. This is called systemic racism. The people who run or work for the government, politicians and institutions such as companies, corporations, churches and the educational system are mostly White people. These entities employ individuals, who might not have a lot of power, but because they represent the government, politicians and institutions such as companies, corporations, churches and the educational system; they can perpetrate racism with protection of the powerful people who run these entities.
Racism in companies and corporations
Racism in companies and corporations is oftentimes difficult to prove. Black people and people of color not getting raises or promotions can be and often are refuted by supervisors proclaiming attitudinal problems. And, unless White people are willing to reveal their income, a Black person or people of color never really know if he or she is being paid the same wages as their white counterparts. Nowadays, there are so many other injustices going on in companies and corporations, racism seems to have banished to the far corners of the human resources files.
There’s a very slick, but very visible weapon companies and corporations use to perform their racism. Because Black people and people of color can spot this not so secret weapon in a New York second, it oftentimes tells us a lot about the company. In fact, the very visible weapon is a person, who Black people and people of color call ‘the spook by the door’. I wonder what the official name the company gives this person. This person is usually a person of color that White people in the company or corporation trust. This ‘spook by the door’ job is to keep out other people of color. Therefore, they are normally in a position of power, in the hiring process. This person of color is carrying out the duties like a white racist would do. But how can you claim a company is racist, when the person doing the hiring is a Black person or a person of color? This is one of the reasons this act within systemic racism works so well. It’s like magic.