Racism – A Synopsis
Though we live in a fast-paced, technologically advanced 21st century, racism is still a major issue in this world. There are many people in this world who are facing discrimination in their daily life. Racism is the practice of discrimination and prejudice towards people based on the race and ethnicity. It is, in fact, the belief of a group of people belonging to a particular race, that they are superior to another race in terms of color and behavior.
History of Racism
The practice of racism existed throughout the human history. The various wars, slavery, division of countries, etc., have happened because of this racism. It can actually be defined as the hatred of one community by another community. The superior or dominant people consider themselves above the suppressed people based on their skin color, language, and place of birth and so on.
The dominant people were those who had unrestricted access to political power, economic resources, high-status jobs and also civil rights. The suppressed people were allowed to have only low-status jobs in the society. People who practice racism is usually devoid of humanity.
Discrimination of the lower races matured and spread in the 19th century. People, who were considered to be from lower races, were discriminated on a daily basis. The people in the colonized areas were particularly exploited for their labor. The resentment and the enmity created as a result of this continues even today.
One of the best examples of racism in the history is the Holocaust which resulted in the killing of millions of European Jews in the Second World War by Adolf Hitler. Yet another example of racism was the slavery of the Africans by the Europeans. The belief of the white people that the black Africans are less human has led to the enslavement. Earlier, the Jews were also considered less human and were subjected to racial atrocities.
The apartheid regime that existed in South Africa during 1948-1994 was also a part of this racial discrimination in which the white people dominated over the black people.
Racism in the Current World
Even in the current world, people of a particular color are generalized and prejudiced. Verbal and physical attacks are common in racism. The African-Americans are still fighting for their rights and existence in the countries like U.S, Australia, and Canada. In the U.S, even their judicial system does not take any effective steps to support the black people.
Racism is a kind of mental harassment. The people who are being harassed feel that they are not important in this world and are also not worthy enough to live here. The practice of racial bullying include;
- Sending insulting messages and threats to the people of another race.
- Creating racist graffiti in front of the houses and workplaces of the people.
- Damaging the belongings of the people.
- Some people are even personally attacked by the other communities.
- The people who are considered to be of a lower race are excluded from all the basic rights of the society.
- Promoting an inferiority complex in the people based on their color, culture, and language.
Different types of anti-racist movements are formed nowadays, to combat these evil practices. The Black Lives Matter is one such movement formed by the African-Americans to protest against the discrimination and torture faced by them from the American judicial system as well as the people.
The various other anti-racist movements include Civil Rights Movement and the Anti-Apartheid Movement. Many scientists, after conducting various studies have clearly explained that the superiority of any community or people cannot be identified with the help of color. The UN also has stated that there does not exist any explanation as to why this discrimination is being practiced in the various countries.
Even though racism is commonly seen in the U.S, the government is currently trying to abolish this system via education. The Museum of Tolerance in California is one such initiative through which the adults and children are given the opportunity to interact with the authentic artifacts from the Holocaust. They are also educated about the practice of racism and their causes and effects on people.
Also read: Essay on Black Lives Matter
To completely abolish the system of racism, the UNESCO has marked March 21 as the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination. This day was marked in memory of the people who were killed by the police for protesting against the apartheid regime in South Africa in the year 1960. In spite of all these measures, racism is still a major threat to the humanity.