What is Racism?

by leaortiz

Here I am going to try to expain this with a simple analogy.

Two priests are walking through the woods. Suddenly they hear a womans cry for help. “Please help me, please!” There stands a woman fully nude. As they tried not look at her bare body, a conversation ensued that since the woman was nude, she most definitely was someone to be avoided and one preist cautioned his brother to steer clear of the woman of ill repute. After listening to the cries, one of the priests went over to talk to her as the other priest was mentally tormented by the situation and stayed behind.

Once the first Priest reached the woman, she said, “can you please help me? As I was bathing, the river washed my clothing down the stream and I have nothing to wear.” The other preist was appalled to watch his companion hand over his own garment to her. He stayed with her and talked to her until she was warm and dry.

As they walked back towards the church, the preist that had witnessed what went on between his brother and the nude woman did not speak to his companion. Eventually the long silence was broken when the Priest that had helped the woman said, “My brother, you have been silent this long journy. Is there a reason as to why?” “Well,” spoke the other Priest, “it really bothered me that you went and had the conversation with the nude woman and gave her your cloak.” To which the first Preist said , “aahh, is that what is torturing you my brother? This happened earlier this morning and all this time you have held this in and let it eat at you? Let me explain what really was going on,” as he explained the whole thing to his companion.

My question on racism is this, to you that think you have been wronged. Who is wrong in the above parable? Was it the Priest that helped the nude woman? OR was it the second Priest that harbored ill will towards his brother and misunderstood what was had happened earlier in the day? Projecting his very own views of what is right and wrong and determining for himself what his brothers motivations were in speaking to the woman.

The answer can only be yours.

We all have what we feel is our own sense of right and wrong and all too often use it to label someone else as a racist because of a certain situation or happening. Those are feelings that are stirred up from the mind, our own mind. When we are one on one with someone, as a person of ethnicity, it is not hard to determine for myself when I see racism. To project it onto another simply because we don’t like a certain word, or skin color spoken of, or even a slang, that comes from within our own minds.

For instance, I once called a friend of mine “Negrita,” in jest. Needless to say, I got the head turn to look at me and ask, “what did you just call me”? She often referred to herself and those around her as black girl. Hearing that in another language stopped her dead in her tracks as it sounds too much like the english equivilant of a racist slang.

Having to explain you are not racist should just not have to be done. Also projecting racism onto others to incite a “racial guilt” does not accomplish anything but to further divide our nation.

As a nation that has just voted in our first Black President, we as a nation can say, as does the National Black Republican Association, “America is now free of the past ‘white guilt’ that has been a horrible mark on our nation. The nation has shown with it’s vote that we no longer harbor the hatred or racial divide that is now a part of our American past.”

It would be nice if President Obama would step up and let this be known to the nation. It would help to completely heal any wounds still felt as a nation and as a people.

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