Requesting your opinion on racism.

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I would like to hear you feelings on just who is keeping racism alive today.

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Submitted by Davids mom on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 8:39am.

To those who state that only 'whites' are racist, look at the groups designated as 'hate' groups in Georgia. Individuals who 'hate' based on 'race' come in all colors/organizations. Only when those who follow the principle of 'do unto others as you would have them do unto you' which is a principle found in all of the major world religions - can we begin to live in peace on this planet.

We must get over the fear of discussing this dis-ease (disease) of racial prejudice/bigotry towards individuals of another color.

There are many in Fayette County who do not harbor racial prejudice - and live peacefully with their neighbors. If the neighbors in your community are not maintaining their property, etc. - organize a community group to address these concerns. If 'whites' and middle class 'blacks' keep running - there will be no affordable place left!

Can only the 'rich' enjoy a well maintained community?

Cyclist's picture
Submitted by Cyclist on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 5:38pm.

Very true!!!
Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 12:01pm.

Racism and Eggshells

I actually like the fact that this matter is being discussed. I have my doubts whether either side will be effected by this debate, but I can certainly hope so.

But let me try and explain, first and foremost how very difficult this issue has become and then to tie in some of my earlier statements.

I mentioned earlier that I am bigoted, we all are. We tend to associate with people that we feel most comfortable with. Whether its people who work at the same factory and who share a beer at the same bar every night, or whether its friends whose company we enjoy at fundraising events for a charity, it is undeniable that we like to be around others for which we share a common thread. There is nothing wrong with this. Nothing at all. The term can have negative connotations, but it doesn't necessarily have to.

The people that I enjoy being around are those people with whom I can feel the most comfortable with. Where I can let my hair down, where I won't get terribly embarrassed at something normal. i.e. with my family I am absolutely comfortable. We laugh, we cry, we fight, and invariably, we love each other desperately. We are also so very different from each other in so many ways, but the things that binds us, are very strong. I can openly tell my family how I feel about the things. I can do things around them that I would absolutely not do around others. We all know of what I speak.

The greatest comfort I have is with my own wife. The deepest intimacy is shared only with her. I discriminate against all others and choose her to be that special person. My children come next, and that bond is strong. Then several notches down that scale are my other relatives, then my dearest friends, then acquaintances and colleagues, until finally I come across my neighbors and people that I meet happenstance, on any given day.

When everything is laid out there, --if all things are equal, I am more comfortable with people from PTC, the next would be from those from Fayette, then from Georgia, and then from America. I feel comfortable around married, older white family men, and not their wives, at least not with some real effort on my part. Why? Because of common bonds we share.

Although Jeffc is a booger eating bed wetting liberal, I have more in common and "comfort" with him, than I do with right wing Christian conservatives who keep their bible at the ready to condemn me everytime I watch an "R" rated movie or drink a gin and tonic. Sure we have great things in apposition, but we have more in common, including the obsession with debating political matters openly and with very thick skins.

My wife absolutely loves to go shopping with our "girlfriends." They share that time with her. I openly mock their "connection" as being silly examples of women "nesting". Because I loathe that experience, but, give me a Home Depot card, and one of my "guy" friends, and my day is pretty much spent discussing the number of amps that I really need for a drill that I will likely only use a dozen times, before its necessary to replace it with the newest model.

I'm not ashamed of my bigotry. That's who I am, and that is who we all are. My bigotry is based upon characteristics that I believe are normal. Its about comfort, plain and simple. I am as comfortable with a black single mother telling me about her day as I am with a white, young, single, male bragging on how many babes he bedded in the last weekend trip to the beach. That is who I am. What is this? It's about walking around on eggshells. I don't like to hear the crunch under my feet, and I avoid at all costs not to step on any.

The reason it is so very hard, is that I often don't even know what the eggshells look like. They are invisible to me. When I am in polite company, I watch my language out of respect for those whose sensibilities might be injured. A small price to pay for a few minutes of association. But at some point, I really need to get away from that and to let my hair down without feeling like every word I speak has to be parsed, culled, and weighed very precisely.

The same reasoning applies when I am around Blacks, er Afro-Americans, errrr African Americans. You see, I don't even know what to call them. I know the "N" word is off limits, god help me for even thinking that word, but do I call them my black friends, my African-American Friends, or are they just friends? Hell, I don't even know how to shake their hands. Yesterday, a black client, an NFL football player, grabbed my hand and almost broke it, very firm and strong handshake. I can relate to macho. While other black clients and many young white ones, will grab my hand, then twist it into a knot, twiddle their thumbs, then withdrawal only to then slam their knuckles against mine. What is this all about? Is it bad, no, not necessarily, but its something I feel less than comfortable with.

Every single step that another person takes that is different than mine, means I am less comfortable with that person. The greatest steps they can take that make me want to run away are when they place personal responsibility upon the back burner of their lives. Where they diminish the need for two parent families. Where athletics are glamorized while academics suffer. And where now, as I am sadly learning is when hatred and victimization is openly spoken about in public in their churches.

Now, I am even more fearful of the "black" experience that Obama says was the reason he moved to South Chicago. I am very uncomfortable in understanding in any way shape or form, how GOD DAMN America is appropriate in any forum. Where being proud of America is considered an epiphany, as Michelle Obama has recently discovered. Where accusing our Government of conspiracy theories of killing young blacks is welcomed with applause. In finding an allegiance with the terrorist organizations such as the Hamas over our allies in Israel. Or over the pure hatred and violent tempers I saw dancing in the pews when shouts of Anti-American faults were cited over and over again.

Obama did not feel uncomfortable in that setting, and that is why it bothers me so. He didn't feel like he was walking on eggshells. Heck, he felt so comfortable he called Rev. Wright part of his family, an uncle.

These are eggshells that I did not know even existed, at least to this extent, and yes, I've grown terribly more uncomfortable with it these last few weeks.

I don't have to understand others to believe they have certain inalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness which is equal to mine. But if you want me to feel comfortable around them, to even enjoy and look forward to their company, then I have to find some common thread that binds us sufficient to overcome the many negatives.

Right now, the negatives that I've seen coming from Reverend Wright and the 24 predominantly black American churches that espouse these horrible messages of hate, is going to be a huge hurdle for me to get around. I can not ever imagine ever finding comfort around such hatred and victimization.

I will never grow comfortable with a culture that espouse values that I believe diminish the foundation of our society. The truest of foundational values is the family. I will never grow comfortable with so much of what is considered normal in the black community and culture, in fact, I doubt I'll ever even be able to get around my own dismay at how blatantly open these racists are in the black community.

For me, that's an eggshell that I will never be able to NOT step upon, because its just plain WRONG. And any amount of debate is not going to change my mind in any way. Sure I can appreciate where many of Rev. Wright's generation is coming from. I know many things were systematically done to the blacks of his generation. But the travesty that I see coming to the black community does not come from racial prejudice directed toward them, especially as a result of decades of racism, but what I see as being more hurtful is the racial ignorance of victimization and a group mentality that deliberately tries to separate themselves from this American experience, into a separate and distinct "black" experience in which Africa is worshipped over America.

Those are huge eggshells, and I will never understand them. So, for those of you who doggedly believe that Rev. Wright's opinions are normal, who considers men of his character "family", well know now, that I will never step over those eggshells, because they are wrong, plain and simple, they are wrong. And if you can't see that, . . . enough to help change it, then you are wrong too. Obama was wrong in not openly standing up to those statements, to the silly theology of "blackness" or "experience" because its wrong, and I'll be damned if I'm going to try and step over those eggshells ever again.

America is by no means perfect. But she is the most wonderful form of Government that has ever existed and for which likely will ever exist, if we don't turn her into some ego-centric buffet of groups of people, rather than upon a melting pot of individuals who share the goals of family and country over all else.

I've talked about absolutes in my earlier discussion about torture. Well, for me, the LOVE of our Country, for what she stands for, for all of the wrongs that she has overcome, and for all of the good things that she has done, is an ABSOLUTE. I absolutely will never understand any person, and especially a leader, who believes that there is another "experience" that is greater than that. Because there isn't one. And God damn anyone who would suggest otherwise.

Submitted by Davids mom on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 10:13am.

. . the result of segregated education and a segregated society. There are those who have experienced closeness to those who have kindred taste - and a different skin color. More of our young are finding that because of their experience with Americans of different colors - there are those, of another color, who have kindred tastes. Thanks for making it perfectly clear how you feel and why. Fortunately, I was raised in a different environment - and just celebrated my 50th high school reunion with classmates who represented Americans of different races and creeds. If we are to ever live up to the words of our Constitution, we must overcome bigotry. If it requires walking on eggshells for some - so be it. Many of us have moved beyond that.

No Love is greater than the love expressed towards someone, something, or a government that has had a history of not loving you.

Submitted by wildcat on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 6:45pm.

Racism is the parent that states that her child is failing algebra because I don't help her because she's black, but not because she's mildly intellectually disabled (and may never understand the math).

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 5:56pm.


I wish I had more time as I am very interested in the topic.

Here are some common definitions of racism.

The Diversity Facilitation Definition: Racism=Racial prejudice PLUS systemic power. All white people enjoy systemic power and have been socilaized to harbor prejudices. No person of color enjoys systemic power. Therefore, all and only white people may be racists.

My problem with this politically motivated definition is that it has absurd results. As presented here, “racist” functions like “bully,” in that one must not only harbor contempt for others, but also have the brawn to act on that contempt. But, arguably, if Mick and Rick equally relish the thought of pounding classmates to the playground turf, but only Mick is big enough actually to carry out the deed, the difference between the two is not a moral one. Both have hatred in their hearts, and Rick would do the same given the opportunity. The fact that he has not been afforded that opportunity is out of his hands and in his genes. It would follow that the lilly white person who thinks that people are people regardless of race is a racist, whereas, say, Kamau Kambon, a black idiot who recently advocated genocide against whites, is not.

This definition also rules out a priori the very possibility of reverse discrimination. But is it not, in principle, possible, that injustices are done to persons of a particular race even if they are members of the more powerful majority?

Racism as Plain Racial Prejudice. People gravitate towards this defintion for generally good and understandable reasons. But I reject it. Here's why. Even if it is not actually the case that any particular race of people is accurately characterized by troublesome behavior from a moral or social point of view, it is, in principle, possible, that some group would. So consider: Someone says, "Ah, the Irish are a hotheaded bunch." Someone else says, "That's a racist statement!" But what if, as a matter of fact, the Irish tend toward hotheadedness? Are people of good will not permitted to notice? How absurd!

Also, even if no one group is in fact and on average more intelligent or more virtuous that some other group, it is, in principle possible that this should be the case. The definition considered here implies that anyone who believes that, generally, members of some group A are more intelligent or more virtuous than members of group B, is a racist. But to be a "racist" is to be something that is morally objectionable. And I maintain that it is never morally objectionable to believe the truth.

When I moved to Minnesota in 1991, there was a story on the Minneapolis news. It seems that a security guard in a major department store was caught on video telling a trainee, "I always watch the black customers more closely when they come in." The guard was offered up as an example of a racist. He may very well have been a bona fide racist.

But I think we have to ask about his experience going in to this training session. What if, statistically speaking, his black customers were, in fact, far more likely to be shoplifters? Can there be anything morally objectionable to a person's responding to sheer probabilities in such a way?

Tell me that a guy is a South Dakota farmer, and I might be willing to place bets that he is not a swimmer. (Tell me that he is also a lifeguard at his local South Dakota YMCA, and I will retract that bet.) The world presents us with probabilities, and there can be nothing immoral about attempting to respond to them in rationally appropriate ways. I believe that racism enters here in at least two instances: (a) a person is too eager to believe the worst about a person or a group based upon ethnicity, or (b), where there are good probabilitistic reasons for being suspicious of randomly chosen representatives of a people group, to be unwilling to adjust one's beliefs based upon the personal merit manifested by a member of the group. (It would be like watching a South Dakotan lifeguard swim like a fish, but, nevertheless, sticking to the assumption that he cannot really swim because he is a South Dakotan.)

I defend the following definition, which is not at all politically motivated.

The Principle of Equality dictates the following: Equals should be regarded and treated equally, and any differential regard or treatment must be justifiable by appeal to some morally relevant difference in the individuals. The problem with racism (as well as sexism) is that it involves differential regard or treatment where the differences are not morally relevant. Unless one is, say, the casting director for Glory or Amistad, skin color tends not to be morally relevant when it comes to, say, hiring situations. And women have complained about the so-called "glass ceiling" in corporate America: it is a "ceiling" in that it keeps females from reaching the top positoins that are achieved by male counterparts, and it is "glass" in that it is invisible--that is, there is no objective reason of merit that would justify such differential treatment.

I think this last definition of racism is the only one that is justifiable. I also think that, on this definition, "reverse discrimination" is possible and, when it occurs, it is unjust and immoral.

Submitted by Davids mom on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 6:34am.

Who was the leader of your 'diversity facilitation' class? Your experience with 'reverse racism' IMO clouds your perception of 'racism' or discriminatory remarks. Making any 'general' statement about a group of people - no matter how you want to 'color' it - is perceived by many as bordering on discriminating based on sex, race, gender, class, nationality, etc. Because some 'whites' make racist statements and react in a perceived racially motivated way - does not condone any person stating that 'whites' are racist. Yet your reasoning regarding why a person who makes a 'general' statement about women or blacks or Irish, etc. should not be considered 'racist', 'sexist', etc. is difficult to understand. I too have experienced racism and sexism - but I also know that if I make a statement that all male whites are chauvinistic - it is not an honest statement based on experience or truth. As long as well-meaning people who do not want to be considered ‘racist’ continue to allow themselves to think that making statements regarding a group of persons based on their race/sex/nationality is justified – we have a long way to go in healing our stereotypical thinking in this country/world.

A statement like – those citizens who live below the poverty line; have less than a college education; and do not provide a stable home environment for their children are undesirable as neighbors – is better than saying the black citizens of Clayton County who do not provide a stable home environment for their children are undesirable as neighbors.

Don't give credence to the thoughts of idiots! Most Americans don't think like idiots in 2008! It doesn't matter if their name is David Duke or Kamau whatever.

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 8:22am.

I categorically deny that my views on the essence of racism stem from any of my personal experiences.

And when I see "diversity facilitators" coming in the front door I leave through the back door.

Actually (and, perhaps oddly), I hold the views I do because of work that I have done in environmental ethics and animal rights. Peter Singer, who is often the villain in these posts, actually makes a good point in discussing the sort of principle of equality that is implicated when thinking about racism. People of good will must be committed to the moral equality of persons, but not necessarily to their factual equality. Suppose you are confronted with the following argument:

(1) People of race A, on average, have a higher IQ than people of race B.
(2) Of any two individuals, x and y, if x has a higher IQ than Y, then x is of greater worth than y.
(3) Therefore, people of race A are, on average, of greater worth than people of race B.

How should a "person of good will" respond to such an argument? Should she regard premise (1) as false? Is the belief that premise (1) is true sufficient for the charge of racism? This seems to be a common assumption. Indeed, researchers who have had the audacity to delve into the question of whether there is, say, a genetically-based difference in IQ among the races have typically been regarded as racists or white supremacists just for raising the question and taking it seriously.

But, Singer asks, WHAT IF IT IS TRUE? There is no commitment here to its actual truth. Rather, whether it is true or false is a contingent matter. It is something that COULD, in principle, be discovered.

Would we then have the grounds for justifying attributions of unequal worth based on race?

Of course not! And the reason is that it is premise (2) that should be the chief target of anyone who rejects racism. The sort of equality that matters is grounded in the intrinsic worth of the individual, and so it is in no way contingent upon such things as IQ (or beauty, or usefulness to society, or wealth, etc).

Definitions should be formulated so as to handle all possible relevant instances, and the definition of racism that sees it strictly interms of prejudice does not satisfy the requirement.

I believe it was my fourth grade teacher whjo told us, "One ought never to make generalizations." Indeed, I have heard that in various forms all of my life. But I have never seen why anyone should subscribe to it. Induction is the great guide of human life, David Hume said. But induction involves making generalizations from experience. Meet a doberman and he bites you, you are wary of the next one you meet. If he bites you as well, indceed, if every doberman out of a dozen, that you meet, makes a lunge for you, you begin to entertain the proposition, "Dobermans are dangerous." It is a generalization that may very well allow for exceptions. Perhaps your friend, who is a doberman owner, will be able to persuade you that her dog is as gentle as a lamb, and perhaps she is right.

Insurance companies uniformly think in terms of classes of people, based on age groups, gender, education, etc., when they give quotes for automobile insurance. It does no good to protest, "But I am a safe driver." They have found that it works best to base their policies on the probabilities that arise from considerations of groups of people.

IN PRINCIPLE it could be true that, as a rule, Liliputians are gullible, Carpathians are amorous and Terebinthians are ill-tempered. The observations might be borne out by extensive experience. In that case, there can be nothing morally objectionable about "prejudice" upon encountering, say, a Terebinthian for the first time. (One thinks to oneself, "Better be on my guard. These folks are known for flying off the handle.") Perhaps over time that expectation will be overcome by the happy realization that this is a congenial Terebinthian. But the expectation is (a) natural and (b) rational and (c) not necessarily immoral.

Submitted by Davids mom on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 2:20pm.

I categorically deny that my views on the essence of racism stem from any of my personal experiences.

I totally respect you expertise as a philosopher. My minute expertise is human behavior (psychology). The views of a human are usually based/influenced by ‘personal experience’.

And when I see "diversity facilitators" coming in the front door I leave through the back door.

Again – who in the world was your ‘diversity facilitator? ☺

The sort of equality that matters is grounded in the intrinsic worth of the individual, and so it is in no way contingent upon such things as IQ (or beauty, or usefulness to society, or wealth, etc).

Agree! I hope you’re not too surprised. ☺

"One ought never to make generalizations." Indeed, I have heard that in various forms all of my life. But I have never seen why anyone should subscribe to it.

All of your arguments and rational thinking make sense. But Muddle, in the world of ‘the people’ – not the world of theorists – you’d better take the word of your 4th grade teacher if you don’t want to appear racist.

Statement: (non- racist): A higher percentage of black men than white men are in jail.

Statement: (racist): Most black men are in jail.

My father taught me the danger of making general statements regarding ‘white’ people. As an adult, he pointed out that for every stereotypical statement he had made regarding ‘white’ people – there was an exception in my personal experience. He advised me not to make statements based on generalizations regarding race, sex, politics, or religion – because there is always the exception. I may offend, or make extremely uncomfortable the very person who before had a very high opinion of my worth and honesty. If I didn’t have the facts to be specific – I was advised to keep quiet until I spoke from a factual foundation – rather than expressing my opinion based on ‘induction’.

Basing thought on generalizations is not ‘immoral’ – but in many situations, it will be considered ‘racist or any of the other ‘ist’.

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 5:44pm.

(racist) Most black men are in jail

This is not racist, per se, it just a wrong statement based upon your apparent facts. I'm not so sure I understand your arugments on this matter at all. If one were to "spread" wrong information to injure a race, then yes, it could be racist, if one knows it to be false, or one makes a generalization without making sure it was accurate.

As to David's Grandfather's refusal to generalize, well, that's nice, but I'd suggest that Generalizations are an appropriate way to live.

Let me ask you Mother of David. You are on a dark city street. Your car has broken down, no cell phone, no where to get help.

Walking down the street toward you is a band of five or six white boys. They have purple hair, tatoos, nose and eyebrow rings, and they are carrying a boom box, blasting the worst sound you've ever heard.

In the opposite direction approaching you is a black man. Dressed in a business suit, clean cut, with a brief case in his hand. Now, who do you turn to for help. Well, if you were my daughter or wife, I'd tell them to ask for help from the black man.

This is based upon a generalization, a prejudicial decision, based upon what we consider normal or proper. There is nothing wrong with that.

The Truth might be though, that the black man is a drug dealer getting ready to make a deal, and the punk rockers are undercover cops, staking this man out, but at this point in your life, you have to make a decision based upon the information that you have. You can't investigate, so you make the correct decision based upon your own prejudices that clean cut black males in business suits can be generally trusted. There is nothing at all wrong with that.

However, generalizations should always be weighed against both time and the individual and the context of the facts as we have come to know them.

David Duke is a racist. REGARDLESS of the evidence that he denies much of these charges, I can see a pattern of how he lived to make a generalization that he is scum.

Why is that so hard to figure out? So the same thing applies to the Obama's racist white grandmother who expressed fear at the prospects of being accousted by a young black male who disporportionately commits crimes at a higher rate that is significant, such as to warrant her prejudice.

Maybe thats why there is so much black on black crime. Because so many blacks refuse to acknowledge this generalization, and therefore are then well suited to be another crime statistic. Even Jessie Jackson bemoaned his own fears of hearing footsteps behind him as he walked on a vacant street one time, only to turn around and see a white guy, which cause him to make a sigh of relief.

So, your father was wrong in not teaching you about "white" people. But at least he wasn't sitting in a pew for 20 years listening to out right lies about Whites spreading HIV and Crack Cocaine to kill blacks, something that your cherished Obama did without objection. . . until he was caught.

Submitted by Davids mom on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 8:12am.

Look up the word 'exception'.

Why is that so hard to figure out? So the same thing applies to the Obama's racist white grandmother who expressed fear at the prospects of being accosted by a young black male who disproportionately commits crimes at a higher rate that is significant, such as to warrant her prejudice.

Obama NEVER called his grandmother 'racist'. She, like many of us, harbored some fears based on race,

You're absolutely right - I would go immediately to the well-dressed 'black' man. My experience has always been that a 'black' gentleman would treat me with respect - even if he were a 'drug dealer'. Cops have not always been reported to do that!

Maybe thats why there is so much black on black crime. Because so many blacks refuse to acknowledge this generalization, and therefore are then well suited to be another crime statistic. Even Jessie Jackson bemoaned his own fears of hearing footsteps behind him as he walked on a vacant street one time, only to turn around and see a white guy, which cause him to make a sigh of relief.

There is black on black crime because blacks are more easily accessible to the black criminals than are whites. There are more poor ‘drug users’ in the black communitiy who need money to support their habit than in the ‘white’ community. There is also ‘white on white’ crime – but it is reported by the media as ‘crime’. Jesse’s comment was describing his fear of ‘today’.

In the past – he would have crossed the street if confronted by a group of ‘white’ footsteps. Today – one should be aware of their surroundings and those around them – regardless of their color. Read the newspaper without ‘racial’ blinders. There is scum in both communities – white collar/blue collar – crime is crime perpetrated on those who are accessible.

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 9:42am.

David's mom,

Again, I'm sorry but I have not the apparent grey matter to understand your logical analysis, so, I'll opine further.

You have ranted and raved about racial problems on this website and about your boy Obama. You have strange definitions about how racism is applicable.

Now let me see if I get this right from your argument.
There is black on black crime because blacks are more easily accessible to the black criminals than are whites. Huh? Do you understand the words that are coming out of your mouth?
If this statement were accurate, at least in what I assume you are trying to say, then the proportion of crime of white on white would be the same as black on blacks, since Whites are more easily accessible to white criminals.

But that is not what happens, in fact the criminal disparity in the differences between blacks and whites is huge, and I'm not just talking about drugs, which arguably is a separate issue we could debate.

While African Americans comprise 12% of the U.S. population, (black males represent 5% of the population) 45% of all murder victims in 2002 were African American, 91% of whom were killed by African Americans. Nationally, homicide is the leading cause of death for black men and second leading cause of death for black women ages 15-24.

This means that blacks are about 12 times more likely to be killed by a black male, then any other sex or race. 12 times more likely!.
That whites on average will likely kill blacks at a rate 7 times LESS than their numbers are represented in the population as a whole.

Facts are stubborn things.

The death rate for blacks from birth until they are are into their 60's is twice that of whites. And the number one
killer is not cancer, not auto-accidents, not HIV as Reverend Wright seems to suggest, but the number one killer of blacks is blacks killing blacks. Regardless of the reason behind it, the number one reason in this black culture for dying is themselves. This culture that blames whites for their dilemma, but does not look to the root causes. The greatest is the INDIFFERENCE the black culture places upon single parent families. More black children are raised by either their mother or grandmother than any race in the U.S.. A culture that promotes and encourages a RAP culture of violence. A culture that promotes itself as a VICTIM at every turn. Hells bells, David's mom, you even are fearful of cops.

I'm not suggesting that there isn't still systemic examples of racism present in our society today, what I'm suggesting is that the liberal policies that Blacks have adopted, are the root to your problems. For God's sake. Promote strong two parent families. Support education over athletics. Support INDIVIDUAL RESPONSIBILITY. I know, I know, the Democrats are there to tell you that you have a perfectly good reason why you can't make it. Why crime is so rampant in your culture. They are there to blame everyone but yourselves for it. And that might make you feel better about it yourself, but the fact is, . . . THE FACT IS, Democratic/liberal policies are literally destroying your society, and all you can do is ignore it.

Your black culture needs Obama like a crack addict needs an unlimited supply of drugs. What you need is a strong black influence like Bill Cosby, Condi Rice, and many other blacks who are fed up with this ridiculous liberal theology of "blaming America first" and "blaming Whitey always".

Obama will hurt your culture because he will endorse it and not denounce it as he should. He could have gotten up and denounced the evil from Wright and others in his black community, but as he has said, Wright is family, part of his black family and experience, and he will never denounce the black racists that is killing, literally killing your own kind.

I've wasted enough time on this subject though. I fear you and Hack and the other liberals on this blog are just so naive and willing to find someone to blame for the crisis that is destroying your culture

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 6:40pm.

Your subject suggested it. But the comment itself seemed only to interact with DM.

Do you agree with the following argument?

(1) Sometimes prejudice is rationally warranted.
(2) It is never immoral to believe anything that is rationally warranted.
(3) Racism is always immoral.
(4) Therefore, sometimes prejudice does not amount to racism.

My defense of (1) is found in the observation that there are possible circumstances in which one's experiences yield reasonable generalizations about whole classes of things (e.g., biker bars, dobermans) or people (e.g. Swedes, California surfers, Martians).

I take (2) to be a necessary truth.

I suspect that (3) will be granted by the main people who want to disagree with my argument.

(4) follows from (1) through (3).

If this argument is sound, then it shows that racism must involve something other than prejudice. This conclusion really goes against the grain of the popular conception of what it means to be a racist.

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 7:13pm.

Sorry, but when I re-read you comments, I intepreted your quotation of David's Mother, as yours.

Which I guess is why I was puzzled. It seems that I am in agreement with you quite a bit, and that's appropriate since we are both angry white males.

But I digress.

One thing that I consider when I'm trying cases, is the theory callled AVAILABILITY HEURISTICS. I'm sure you are familiar with it.

The reason I mention it, is that it plays very well into this Black reverse Racism that the likes of Obama and Rev. Wright thrive upon.

For those who are not aware, this theory states that that people tend to predict or give greater weight to it's frequency, of events occurring based not upon the facts, but how easily available those memories are to the listener. e.g. sharks kill swimmers, especially surfers. . ., every year, but so also does lightning. If we would ask the general population which they believe caused more deaths each year, and they will almost always say shark attacks, even though lightning is bar far more dangerous. The reason, shark attacks are always reported in the news, and they make for great movies. Which means we remember them more.

I'll sequae now to Rev. Wright and his sermons of hate and bigotry.
He tells his parishioners that Whitey is poisoning their community with drugs and with the HIV disease. He says the whites are the real demons out there, and but for whitey, blacks would be in a much better fate.

Now, the average black in his church apparently has had this victimization drilled into their heads since birth. Everyone in the black community talks about their slavery roots and of examples of how whitey got ahead, on the backs of blacks. So when Wright or Obama makes some ludicrious charge about HIV or Crack, or even how evil Israel is, they are ready to jump on board, because for them, the slavery issue is still part and parcel of their existence.

Mind you, the average black living in America can not be at all compared the average black living in Africa, but all they are taught, apparently, is that Africa is the motherland, raped by whitey.

So, that memory is the first and easiest for them to remember, and therefore, anything, ABSOLUTELY ANY DRIVEL spewed out by the likes of Wright and Obama are given full weight with no scrutiny, because it "rings true" to them.

Just my final thoughts while I prepare to watch John Adams on HBO oppress the blacks in the Southern States as they right the first American Constitution.

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 7:24pm.

We have rabbit ears on top of the TV, with little squares of tin foil attached to the tips for better reception.

No cable.

No satellite.

It is on occasions like this--the airing of John Adams--that I am tempted to recant on my opposition to cable.

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 7:32pm.

I have watched the first two parts almost five times. It's hard to explain the emotion and the pride one gets from watching these old white male oppressors fight for the creation of a true Republic, and oppose a Democracy. So, when the DVD comes out on June 10th, you will be able to enjoy it all, but get there first, because I will buy the first copy I see.

I've made my young'uns watch the first one, --through all the hems and haws, now they can't wait to watch the third one. Its tremendous, absolutely wonderful. Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers were wonderful, but this is even better.

And what is this about the TV? My God how do you survive without the Discovery Channel, the History Channel, the National Geographic Channel and of course my favorite, My Name is Earl, the quintessential sitcom on philosphy. (You can watch them on, so give it a look see.)

Oh, and get a darn TIVO too. I don't know how I survived without my TiVo. A surf board is for young guns, you're an old fart, so sit down in the lazy boy, grab your remote, and start living!

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 8:05pm.

My daughter bought me the whole first season as a gift. I loved it.

Then, the second season seems to have involved either different writers or the same writers having been injected with perverse ideas. It began to be smutty where it used to be funny.

When Steve Martin's character in Planes, Trains and Automobiles has absolutely had enough and unloads the F-bomb multiple times on the rental car lady, it is hilariously funny. I've seen the edited TV version that tames the F-word. Not nearly as funny. The humor is in the incongruity between the character he plays (a classy family man) and the language to which he is reduced (F-ing this and that). I can appreciate the role that obscenity can play in humor. But "Earl" seems to have become obscene for the sake of the obscenity itself. I stopped watching.

Git Real's picture
Submitted by Git Real on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 8:05pm.


I can truly relate. I dumped Comtrash about 3 or 4 years ago. I recently heard so many good things about the Ken Burns program on WWII. I was so excited when I purchased it at Sams a month ago. I was awaiting the proper time to watch it with the Gitlets. My oldest just happened to be studying the Great War and we were all excited about starting the series late this past Friday night. If you could imagine how upset we were to find that what I had actually bought was a four CD set containing the Soundtrack to the series and other music of that era. Arrrgggghhhhh! I felt like I had been duped.

Richard, I feel like I've been deceived. Will you sue Sam's for me? LOL!

I am missing the John Adams series and have heard much good about it also. Please keep us posted. I intend to purchase a copy of that program also. Along with a real copy of the WWII program which aired on PBS. June 10th eh?

Something I discovered on the History Channel today was they air encore presentations of Battlefield 360. That was recommended to me today and I plan on kicking back and watching one of those after I get the little people to bed.

Happy Easter guys!

"I'm Pro Choice - On Light Bulbs Cool

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Sun, 03/23/2008 - 4:39pm.

Thanks for the reply. I'll try a bit of point-for-point reply.

Again – who in the world was your ‘diversity facilitator? ☺

Nobody. Unless it was my mom, who taught me that people are people, regardless of race, etc.

All of your arguments and rational thinking make sense. But Muddle, in the world of ‘the people’ – not the world of theorists – you’d better take the word of your 4th grade teacher if you don’t want to appear racist.

Statement: (non- racist): A higher percentage of black men than white men are in jail.

Statement: (racist): Most black men are in jail.

Thanks for saying that my arguments make sense. A part of what I am sugghesting here is that the popular understanding of what constitutes racism is simply misguided. Consider your statement "Most black men are in jail." This is, I am pretty certain, false. And the "racism" comes in, presumably, when a dislike for "black men" clouds an individual's judgment to the degree that they are willing to utter a known falsehood.

But suppose that, contrary to fact, it was TRUE that "Most black men are in jail." Assuming that the prison terms are not themselves evidence of injustice, and assuming that the speaker is not in some direct or indirect way implicated in the injustice, how in the world could it be racist for someone to mirror reality with their language by stating the fact?

I'll try to state my point even more forcefully than before: It is, in principle, possible, that prejudice is justified by experience.

I spent several years in a small midwestern town of great diversity: it was a mix of Swedes and Norwegians. Now, so far as I could tell, individuals of both groups were pretty tame. But suppose that, all other things being equal, if you met a Swede you met a scoundrel.
COuld it possibly count against a Norwegian if he harbored the expectation that the next Swede he met would be a scoundrel? This is, by definition, prejudice. But I am arguing that, under such conditions, the prejudice would be rationally justified. And I am also arguing that it does not make sense to say that one is immoral in harboring a rationally justified belief. But I think that racist attitudes are immoral. And so it follows that, possibly, prejudice is not sufficient for racism.

What I am arguing for is a definition of racism that is rationally defensible and not politically motivated.

River's picture
Submitted by River on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 9:13am.

Muddle, you directed this at David's Mom, and I'm interested in her reply. But I've thought about this a lot, and you are absolutely right that we HAVE TO make generalizations just to get through our daily life. Your example regarding aggressive Dobermans was right on the money.

The catch is that if we agree that generalizations are necessary, then it sets us up to become racists who think that all whites are "A" and all blacks are "B". Which is clearly wrong. So the challenge becomes one of making necessary generalizations while still realizing that there are exceptions to all generalizations. You must be willing to put the generalization aside and judge an individual on their unique merits, once you get a chance to know them. However, it's unrealistic for "diversity" types to say that we should always start off with a completely blank slate with each person we meet. You have to make some sort of initial assessment based on first impressions and previous experience. It's impossible not to, and dangerous as well. (aggressive dog = danger)

One good example of overusing generalizations is the discussion in another thread about whether Yankees are rude drivers or perhaps Southerners are actually more rude than Yankees. Personally, I'm convinced that most drivers are becoming more rude across the board, regardless of origin. But I will assume each driver is probably "average" until that driver shows me otherwise. Then I'll act accordingly.

Submitted by Davids mom on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 8:36am.

Good point River. That was my point in my answer to Richard.
Muddle: Unfortunately we all don't use 'logic' in forming our opinions of others.

An aside: Having just returned from driving on LA freeways - I, based on experience, unequivocally state that Georgia drivers are more courteous than LA drivers. (But LA drivers have greater skill!)

Muddle: I just can't believe that your mother formed your opinion of 'diversity facilitators'. You once gave a definition given to you by a 'facilitator' of the word 'racism' - as only 'whites' can be racist. I just can't believe that came from
your mother. I'm interested because so many have received diversity training from those who are full of bitterness - and this only opened the festering sore of racism rather than healing it.

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 10:24am.

First, read again. I wasn't implying that my mom taught me what I identified as the "diversity facilitation view" (or whatever).

Did you have a chance to see my blog titled "The Moral Courage of the Human Mind"? It is about the kind of diversity facilitation that takes place on campuses across the country. It features the likes of Shakti Butler and Jona Olssen.

You seem to me to be a very healthy corrective to this widespread trend. Why not write on the topic? I mean, like, a book.

Submitted by Davids mom on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 8:05am.

Just a question. Did you read the authors you suggested? Thanks.

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 8:09am.

I'm not sure which ones you mean. The links to Shakti Butler and Jona Olssen? To the degree that they qualify as "authors," yes. Or is it something else that I mentioned?

Submitted by Davids mom on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 5:28pm.

I'm reading Butler and Olssen now. I'll get back to you. Contrary to popular belief - I don't spend that much time on this issue - but I do want to explore this with you. I want to be sure I understand what concepts of theirs you disagree with. Have a nice day!

muddle's picture
Submitted by muddle on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 6:17pm.


I'll be happy to talk about it.

Submitted by Davids mom on Wed, 03/26/2008 - 5:28pm.

Oops - posted it twice. Sorry

Submitted by Davids mom on Mon, 03/24/2008 - 11:21am.

Sorry about the mis-read. Books by Dr. Beverly Tatum cover the subject. A good read!

My experience in diversity training was in the mid-60's. I'll take the time to read the two 'trainers' that you mentioned - and get back to you.

Dr. Tatum's books can be found on - for a review of titles and content.

Cyclist's picture
Submitted by Cyclist on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 7:03am.

"muddle" call me a racist so I asked "beaver" if that was so and he said no. Smiling
Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

Submitted by Davids mom on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 7:16am.

LOL! What do they say about 'in the eye of the beholder'?

Richard Hobbs's picture
Submitted by Richard Hobbs on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 3:07pm.

The number one reason we have race relation problems in America?

Vocabulary. We can't even agree on the meaning of the words we use. So I'll define the terms below correctly.

Racism- Means the belief in one race's intrinsic superiority over another.
It does not mean bigotry, it does not mean prejudice.

Instead its used as a weapon against any comment made by a white person that a black person finds offensive. The effect is to quash all debate. To silence all discussion. The charge of "racist" de facto establishes the truth of the person's guilt, with no other evidence necessary. Whites are the only racists, and it is absolutely impossible for blacks to be or act racist.

Prejudice-Means to judge someone without full knowledge.

Its not a bad word at all, in fact, it can be a good thing. I'm prejudice against any stranger I meet on a dark night on a vacant street in Atlanta. To judge someone harshly AFTER you've gained full knowledge, or to ignore full knowledge and rely upon your uneducated opinion, is ignorance and perhaps even possibly racist, depending on the usage. I'm prejudice against criminals, whether black or white. I'm prejudiced against Democrats. I assume they prefer to feel more than think about issues. I'm occasionally wrong, but until I learn otherwise, then that is my opinion, and so far, that prejudice has only been overturned by a very few number of liberals.

Bigotry- Means an intolerance for others who hold different views. Well I'm a bigot. I don't like criminals, men that cheat on their wives and think its okay, of people who lie or steal, etc. Am I bigoted against blacks, Asians or Hispanics? Yes, if they are criminals, have children out of wedlock or are illegals, then yes. Otherwise, if they are law abiding, family people who love America and want the very best for us all, then welcome aboard.

Affirmative Action- The true definition is reverse and legalized discrimination.

It attempts to tackle past legalized discrimination by discriminating against many people that had done absolutely nothing wrong in the earlier discriminations. It often even benefits people whose heritage had nothing to do with these past discriminations, but who now benefit from the reverse effects, such as first generation Africans that come to America.

"N" word. This is the most unique word in all of the universe. It is absolutely forbidden to be uttered under any circumstances, (unless its in a rap song performed by blacks or in a black church). If the word is heard coming from any non-black's lips, then the listener absolutely has the right to retaliate with violence, including the felonious charge of "racist", and said actions will be held to be justified.
The "N" word is similar to God's name. The Jews consider their God's name so sacred, they even spelled it incorrectly, so as to never accidentally uttering it So the "N" word is almost like the words Jehovah, Yaweh, or Yahweh.

Political Correctness The reason for the confusion of the meaning of these words is something that liberals like to call Political Correctness, or what they call, being "tolerant". The truth or facts of a matter or issued are only permitted, if the political consequences are first weighed by a liberal to determine who that liberal "feels" about that issue. Once they "feel" what is right, then the politically correct thing is determined, and any disagreement is again deemed to be "racist" or "sexist" or some type of "ist".

The issue though, is not about race, which is generally how the skin pigments reflect light differently, or whether you have long black hair, or blond hair etc., no the real issue of race in this nation is CULTURE.

Culturism-Some cultures of all races, are superior. Some Cultures impress upon their children the need to learn academics or skills that will further their lives. Some cultures encourage two parent families and direct participation of both parents in the lives of their children, along with a work ethic and individual responsibility. Some Cultures accept crime, drugs, promiscuity as part and parcel of their "experience" rather than as something that they should openly disavow and discourage. Some cultures blame others for their problems and live their lives as victims, unable to cope with life, and who find comfort in knowing that their lazy and worthless lives are not their faults but the fault of someone else, who they can openly hate, because a man of God, said it was okay.

So, again, its not about race, its about culture and its about fairly defining the terms so that we all can understand what it is that we have so much division on.

Okay, now the first blogger to call me a racists wins a case of Jeff's Billy beer, that he denies he is hording in his beer cellar.

Submitted by Davids mom on Sat, 03/22/2008 - 6:40am.

So, again, its not about race, its about culture and its about fairly defining the terms so that we all can understand what it is that we have so much division on.

How about beginning with what we have in common? First, we would need to get a consensus on the vocabulary/definitions.

Submitted by lion on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 6:38pm.

OK Richard, you are a racist.

Are you happy?

This seems to be a title you are aspiring to.

It is amazing how one minister in Chicago can get you and other white males in Georgia quaking in your boots. You seem to be such a sensitive soul. You take pride in being a bigot, for prejudice, and cannot understand how the N-word used by African-Americans is different than when used by whites.

I do not want to get into any long debate with you. I could not change your mind and you could not change mine.

I just want you to know that not everyone who lives here agrees with your pontifications.

All I want is my case of beer. Where can I pick it up?

Submitted by Davids mom on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 11:41am.

All who have answered this question have embraced all of the elements that would have been in my answer. I see more 'racism' expressed on blogs and in the media than I actually encounter in Georgia. A balanced education from schools and churches, an exposure to humans of other cultures who have kindred tastes and goals, and the attempt to honestly judge a person by their actions rather than their color would be a start.. . .and I believe that the majority of citizens in this country have begun the journey. We all have a lot of stereotypical thinking to overcome . . .but I don't believe Americans are 'static' in this area.

Cyclist's picture
Submitted by Cyclist on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 11:55am.

A balanced education from schools and churches, an exposure to humans of other cultures who have kindred tastes and goals, and the attempt to honestly judge a person by their actions rather than their color would be a start.

And don't forget the home.

Caution - The Surgeon General has determined that constant blogging is an addiction that can cause a sedentary life style.

hutch866's picture
Submitted by hutch866 on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 1:36pm.

Most of the hard core racists I've ever met had parents that were the same way it's learned at home first and maybe later reinforced in the community but it mostly starts at home.

I yam what I yam....Popeye

Submitted by Davids mom on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 12:15pm.


TonyF's picture
Submitted by TonyF on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 9:27am.

I'm going to wait awhile to give-it-up. I want to see where this goes, first.

O wad some Power the giftie gie us,To see oursels as ithers see us!
(R. Burns)
If we could see ourselves as others see us, we would vanish on the spot.
(E. M. Cioran)

AF A-10's picture
Submitted by AF A-10 on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 8:57am.

I believe it is a bitter legacy so hard to shake. If you grow up hearing bow ties are the best, then you won't be caught dead with a blue oval. If you've knocked bow ties all of your life, you don't dare run anything having that or the GM* on the grill. It's what you know, or think you know.
I have a multicultural extended family. We have white, black, Islanders, American Indian. To be completely honest, at times I even look twice at interracial couples. It's because when I grew up in North Carolina, I'd fear for the safety of these couples, and when I see them now, my first or second thought is always, "I wonder what they go through day to day?" My brother has a white wife. They live in Central Florida and, thank God, have not faced much overt racism. That which they did face came, mainly, from the white side of the family that had a hard time overcomming the stereotypes bred from their central Tennessee routes. Once they got to KNOW all of us, and saw we were no more disfunctional than they were, our relationships all improved.

Moral of the story, we've got to be brave enough to get to really know people who may not look, think, or worship like we do. It's not the easiest thing to do, but I think our kids have a clue, and their kids will will most likely have this race thing licked.


Kevin "Hack" King

NUK_1's picture
Submitted by NUK_1 on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 7:45am.

What keeps it alive? Plenty. Sheer ignorance and a lack of education/reasoning for starters("I look in the mirror and see my skin color, therefore my skin color is superior to all others"), cultural("my parents and peers hate RaceX so RaceX is inferior to mine"), money("hey, I can get loads of money and attention by selling racism"), excuses for self-pity and personal failure("I'd be making more money and have a better job if it wasn't for RaceZ"). Mythology ("we are the chosen people of God").

Will it ever end entirely in our lifetimes? No chance. It might get "better" but there will always exist some forms of racism, though it will likely be more of the subtle variety than the in-your-face kind. Show me any multi-race country on this planet and I will show you a country that has some strong elements of racism and bigotry, and some much more obvious than the US.

WHY beyond all of the above are people racist? Human beings have a great capacity to learn, but only when they work it and want it. Some will always be too lazy to spend the effort and brain-power to learn and instead will settle for whatever is easiest for them to comprehend. Some people will believe ANYTHING if they hear it repeated often enough because they are mentally lazy, uneducated, inexperienced, and loving it all anyway.

Submitted by skyspy on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 7:15am.

I think it is extremist nutjobs in every race that fuel hate and mistrust. If all of us lowly average people would stop listening to them, we would be fine.

BPR's picture
Submitted by BPR on Fri, 03/21/2008 - 6:56am.

I know what your question was but I don't see it, so this is my opinion.

click "Human Race Only"

Have a nice day.Smiling

We Will Stand

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