Thursday, September 24, 2015

You Might Not Mean To Be Racist...

...but you are.

Nothing's funnier than watching a racist get mad for being called a racist. And if you let them talk long enough in an attempt to defend themselves, you'll see just how racist they really are. The denial always makes it worse.

The fact is, we all have subconscious or unconscious biases. Test yours now! Racism is and has been rampant in this country since its inception (and even before that). It is not just individual racism either; the most insidious form of racism is institutional. The pervasiveness of racism over time seeps in to everyone's conscious, somehow someway. Even the victims of racism can internalize racist beliefs. 

Image result for uncle ruckus
That's called "Uncle Ruckus Syndrome."

Having these unconscious biases is not wrong necessarily; even when we have good intentions, we often act on our unconscious biasesThe problem is when we deny their existence and continue to act on them, consciously or unconsciously. If large groups of people are offended by what you say or do, figure out why, apologize, do better and keep it moving. 

Overcoming these biases takes a conscious effort. People need to acknowledge these biases first, and then consciously work through them. What makes me laugh/cry is when people deny the possibility that their views could be taken as offensive; they get offended that anyone dare to be offended and they completely miss the irony in that perspective. Or worse, they just deny that racism even exists, which takes a cognitive dissonance that I will never fully understand.

A lot of the actions I describe in the videos below are micro-aggressions. Taken as a single, solitary incident, a micro-aggression (an unintentionally racist/sexist/homophopic statement or act) is, well, exactly what it says: micro. Not that big a deal. But imagine being on the receiving end of these acts, multiple times a day, over the course of your entire life. Any single act could be the proverbial straw that broke the camel's back. That's why it is important to be conscious of your thoughts and beliefs and especially your actions. 

These acts in and of themselves don't make you a bad person. Ignoring or denying them does. You should understand or at least make an attempt to understand the reality of what you're doing. And if you still think you're doing nothing wrong, then yes, you are a bad person.

The purpose of this series of Vines is to bring awareness of those unintentional, subconscious moments of racism and discrimination. Honestly, it has turned into one hell of a social experiment. Check out the comments on some of the vines to get a better look at the mentality of "The Unconscious Racist." It's funny, sad, scary and pathetic all in one!

Actually, the real purpose of this series of Vines is to make me laugh and hopefully a few other people laugh, too. It's good, and necessary, to laugh at ourselves and at serious issues; that is, if we can learn from it and attempt to do better. 

Some of the acts or beliefs described are much more serious than others. For example, calling the children of immigrants "anchor babies" is way worse than saying, "I don't see color," but both stem from a similar mentality of reasserting the status quo. "You don't see color" means you don't see the realities of racism, which in turn means you must think people complaining about racism are liars. Calling people "anchor babies" is clearly more hateful, but denying the existence of the different treatment of people with darker skin in this country is insulting. 

Although I take this subject seriously, it's all in good fun and it's all love. Enjoy!

I Love You All...Class Dismissed.

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