Racism is the belief that all members of a particular race possess certain characteristics, specific to their race as superior to other races. In other words, racism is the act of passing judgment on one person on the basis of their skin colour, social or cultural background.
People just assume that their race is superior without even researching about the other race; they just invent reasons why other races are inferior. Being different in today’s society is something people don’t seem to understand and it scares them. Today’s society has standards and expects something of us and when someone/something is different, society tries to push it out.
Racism has been something that goes way back and has caused unjust laws to be passed. Unfortunately, racism still continues today, even with the democratic laws that exist. But the laws have made an impact, because today we do have black presidents and that’s a big step in getting rid of racism.
Racism always existed in human history. Many people tried to justify such behavior towards one another. Racism can be related back to the time of apartheid and even though apartheid is over; even today the decisions are still made based on one’s skin colour. The racism issue is mainly a social discrimination issue and has affected our economy in a negative way.
The question is, why are people racist or why do they have racist attitudes? Firstly, I could say it’s because people tend to hang around people ‘like them’. It’s normal to want to spend time with people that have the same interests, background, culture, and language. It creates a sense of belonging and that is really important. The downside is that it can also set up differences between other groups and over time this might lead us to think that our group is better than the other.
Secondly, I could say we tend to blame others for our problems. When we feel angry or frustrated we often look for someone else to blame for our problems. As a community we are also doing the same thing. People who walk or talk differently to us are an easy target. People always make nasty comments like, “those people are taking our jobs” or “they get governments handouts all the time,” and nearly all the time these statements are wrong.
There are no reasons or excuses for racism
It’s just wrong. Racism is against the law and if you’re ever a victim of it then you can lay a complaint with the Equality Court. The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) or the Criminal Court. If the person is found guilty he or she may be ordered to make a public apology, pay a fine or financially compensate the victim. In South Africa there hasn’t been many people jailed for being a racist, but if a perpetrator doesn’t comply with the order, they could face jail time.
Racism is even categorised, where black people are often associated with anything illegal such as drugs, robberies and murder. Asians are usually mocked because of their tiny eyes and that they ‘all look the same’ and foreigners who came illegally in our country are ill-treated. To me there are no blacks, no whites and no Asians. There is only one race and that’s the human race.
Nelson Mandela once said that, “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.”
What more can I say, it is seriously stupid to hate someone because of their skin colour. We were born differently that’s what makes us unique; if we were all the same then the world would be a boring place. We should embrace each other’s cultures and races and not mock each other. We should be like pandas, they are black, white and Asian.
I believe that racism should be eradicated. Racism has occurred for centuries, but there is still a chance to end it. I believe that racism should end because if it continues, it can split the already tainted unity of races. It may also lead to violence within our country. Racism should be stopped because I don’t think there is a race that is superior to another race. All races have the same capabilities as the next race.
Tell us: How do you think we can eradicate racism in our communities?