Does systemic racism exist?

Debate and discussion on racism and related issues

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otseng
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Does systemic racism exist?

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Post by otseng »

Institutional racism (also known as systemic racism) is a form of racism that is embedded as normal practice within society or an organization. It can lead to such issues as discrimination in criminal justice, employment, housing, health care, political power, and education, among other issues.
"The collective failure of an organization to provide an appropriate and professional service to people because of their colour, culture, or ethnic origin. It can be seen or detected in processes, attitudes and behaviour that amount to discrimination through prejudice, ignorance, thoughtlessness, and racist stereotyping which disadvantage minority ethnic people."
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Institutional_racism
Just as many Americans see no signs of “systemic racism” in our society. They feel no personal racial prejudice and point to civil rights legislation and court decisions that outlawed racial discrimination in government and the private economy. Although these Americans recognize that there are a few white supremacists in the country, their number is insignificant and that they are especially rare in our law enforcement agencies. In the rare instance when a law enforcement officer is found to be racist, that officer is normally disciplined and removed from the force.
https://calcoastnews.com/2020/09/the-my ... ic-racism/
I’ve had multiple conversations with white friends and acquaintances over the past several weeks and many of them have told me about their white friends, family members, neighbors and co-workers that don’t believe systemic racism is real. They thinks it’s a hoax, that it is a tool to blame white society for the ills of communities of color. They think we live in a colorblind society and that real racism died in the 1960s.
http://www.milwaukeeindependent.com/fea ... at-you-do/

For debate:

Does systemic/institutional racism exist in the US?

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Purple Knight
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Re: Does systemic racism exist?

Post #51

Post by Purple Knight »

otseng wrote: Tue Nov 17, 2020 5:30 amDisregarding what classifies as evil or sinful, I think we can agree it's not a good thing to disrespect others, esp when it's based solely on appearance, whether it's scratching an ugly girl's record or firing a fat woman or calling a black person a nigger.
Well, the latter is objectively wrong. While I would agree with you on a subjective level because it's not my preference to do those things either, I'm not going to judge those who do. I think if you can't stand fat people or want to taunt ugly girls, you have a right to do so. I wouldn't call you wrong or bad to do so any more than I would call you wrong to eat avocados... and I think avocados are extremely, extremely, extremely disgusting. What's disgusting to me may not be disgusting to you. You may actually enjoy it. Personal preference.
otseng wrote: Tue Nov 17, 2020 5:30 amAt a minimum, all these things are rude. But, the question then is why would racism be considered worse than judging fat and ugly people?
For the same reason murder is worse than rudeness. Ultimately some acts are evil by nature like racism and murder and some acts like rudeness or niceness just amount to personal choice.

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otseng
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Re: Does systemic racism exist?

Post #52

Post by otseng »

Purple Knight wrote: Tue Nov 17, 2020 9:36 pm I think if you can't stand fat people or want to taunt ugly girls, you have a right to do so. I wouldn't call you wrong or bad to do so any more than I would call you wrong to eat avocados... and I think avocados are extremely, extremely, extremely disgusting. What's disgusting to me may not be disgusting to you. You may actually enjoy it. Personal preference.
I'd disagree that comparing avocados to people is relevant. Taunting an ugly person is not on the same level as avoiding avocados. It goes beyond personal preference, but would be considered wrong. I'm not going to stop you from not eating avocados, but I hope I would have the guts to stop you from taunting an ugly person, or a fat person, or a black person (I use you in the hypothetical).
otseng wrote: Tue Nov 17, 2020 5:30 amBut, the question then is why would racism be considered worse than judging fat and ugly people?
For the same reason murder is worse than rudeness. Ultimately some acts are evil by nature like racism and murder and some acts like rudeness or niceness just amount to personal choice.
That doesn't explain the "why?".

Here's my thoughts on why judging people on skin color is worse than judging people on height or beauty...

I believe one reason it's worse is because it is a systemic problem. We have an entire class of people that have been treated as subhuman for centuries in the US. They have not been counted as a person, but just property. They have not been allowed to use the same restroom or use the same water fountain. Policies intending to alleviate poverty has instead enslaved them and destroyed families. Prisons are filled with blue collar criminals while white collar criminals get a slap on the wrist.

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Re: Does systemic racism exist?

Post #53

Post by Purple Knight »

otseng wrote: Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:53 amI'd disagree that comparing avocados to people is relevant. Taunting an ugly person is not on the same level as avoiding avocados. It goes beyond personal preference, but would be considered wrong. I'm not going to stop you from not eating avocados, but I hope I would have the guts to stop you from taunting an ugly person, or a fat person, or a black person (I use you in the hypothetical).
(So did I.) For a black person I see the immorality. For the others I really don't. Is it discomfort that's the issue here? Should we prevent anything that causes some high degree of discomfort? If so then you really should stop me from eating avocados.
otseng wrote: Thu Nov 19, 2020 7:53 amThat doesn't explain the "why?".

Here's my thoughts on why judging people on skin color is worse than judging people on height or beauty...

I believe one reason it's worse is because it is a systemic problem. We have an entire class of people that have been treated as subhuman for centuries in the US. They have not been counted as a person, but just property. They have not been allowed to use the same restroom or use the same water fountain. Policies intending to alleviate poverty has instead enslaved them and destroyed families. Prisons are filled with blue collar criminals while white collar criminals get a slap on the wrist.
That's a reasonable explanation but I think giving any sort of why in this case actually weakens the argument. Firstly does this state of necessary special consideration persist forever? If not how far removed from the wrongs would we have to be in order for it not to persist? To whom does it apply (who must supply that extra benefit)? You have a lot of racists claiming they don't need to supply any extra benefits or considerations because they never enslaved anybody. It also opens the door to the Irish arguing that their ancestors were treated poorly too. Add to that anyone whose ancestors were slaves trying to claim the same special rights.

Racists think you're cheating them. In a way they're right. Non-racists are responsible for laying down the law and when you lay down special rights and include a why that might include them, they're going to fight for that. In some cases they may conclude that they have that and they're the ones being oppressed by being denied the benefit of it.

They are already willing to accept your edicts. This is that "everyone-wants-to-be-good" thing I was musing about. If the edict has no why in it, honestly that will shut them up.

Every racist argument is spurred on by the why. If he gets that, then maybe I should get this. If this applies this way in one situation, it should apply the same way in my situation. The why basically gives people license to ignore nuances and demand everything everybody else has.

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Re: Does systemic racism exist?

Post #54

Post by otseng »

Purple Knight wrote: Thu Nov 19, 2020 5:42 pm Firstly does this state of necessary special consideration persist forever? If not how far removed from the wrongs would we have to be in order for it not to persist? To whom does it apply (who must supply that extra benefit)? You have a lot of racists claiming they don't need to supply any extra benefits or considerations because they never enslaved anybody.
With all the blacks I've talked to over the past several months about racism, none of them are seeking any special considerations or extra benefits. All they seek is the same treatment as everyone else. The police treat them the same as non-blacks. Bankers treat them the same as non-blacks. The justice system treats them the same as non-blacks. Should racists oppose equal treatment?

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Re: Does systemic racism exist?

Post #55

Post by Purple Knight »

otseng wrote: Fri Nov 20, 2020 7:31 amWith all the blacks I've talked to over the past several months about racism, none of them are seeking any special considerations or extra benefits.
In context I was saying that racists want extra benefits.
otseng wrote: Fri Nov 20, 2020 7:31 amAll they seek is the same treatment as everyone else.
And they should have it. They should get the same treatment as everyone else, and people should be prevented by law from discriminating against them. "The same treatment as everyone else" includes the fact that we're all discriminated against sometimes. The difference is in the immorality and arguably magnitude of that discrimination.

If a white person, ugly person, fat person wants the protection, tough. They don't need it, it's not moral to give it to them, end of story.

Phrasing it as "the same treatment as everyone else" allows racists to open the door to their perverted view that because victims have special protections, they should too, even though they are not victims.
otseng wrote: Fri Nov 20, 2020 7:31 amShould racists oppose equal treatment?
In their warped minds, racists don't oppose equal treatment. They think getting the same protection from discrimination as black people, or black people not having that protection because they don't, would be equal treatment.

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Re: Does systemic racism exist?

Post #56

Post by Tarnished »

Racism is still prevailing in so many countries around the world. We need people who can fight for the rights of weaker ones. One great example of such a fight is karim jivraj and his amazing work when it comes to minorities all over Canada who have struggled with settling in their new country. One great point he pinpointed and made clear was the need for a better national identity in the coutry. We Canadians need to be more united for our future generations and kids. It's great that people like him think with an open mind.

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