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IAmZamzam
09-25-2009, 12:29 AM
I remember one day in the second grade. There was a commotion and I asked what was going on. The teacher told me in a sort of hushed tone that one of my classmates was in trouble for refusing to play ball with a kid in our class named Mike. When I asked why, she whispered that it was because Mike was black. My head was just spinning. What on earth did that have to do with playing ball? It was my first witnessing of racism; and in a sense my head has not stopped spinning since.

Of all of the world’s evils racism is the only one that I have a great deal of trouble understanding. Other vices--even the ones I am seldom if ever tempted to commit--at least seem comprehensible to me, but racism, for me, is a huge mind-screw.* I’ve tried to understand it for a long time now and though I still haven’t quite succeeded, I have a few theories (or at least a few ruminations).

It’s far too easy to pass the thing off as the mere result of not thinking at all—at least for every racist all of the time. Nor is it just a sign of low intelligence. H.P. Lovecraft, for example, was one of the most brilliant people who ever lived and he was also one of the most ridiculously racist (though still also ridiculously talented) authors in the history of fiction. I speculate that his racism may have resulted from or tied into some weird theories he had about genetics, evolutionary biology, “racial memories” and atavisms.

Part of the fuel or appeal of racism, I suppose, must just be the nearly universal human tendency not to think for oneself but instead just believe whatever one is brought up to believe or what is being believed by the bandwagon all around one.--You know, that thing the Koran is always complaining about, and which every prophet had to face: “We will believe what our fathers did.” If someone like that is raised by racist guardians and/or in a racist climate, their (avoidably) weak minds will naturally assume the zeitgeist to be true and never question it—just like the average person never questions anything else their upbringing or zeitgeist spoonfeeds them. There are places in the Middle East, for example, where propaganda against all Jews/Arabs (and Americans especially) is poured out in droves.

Sometimes it’s the military. When someone goes to war against an army of another race I guess the superior officers try to get them to kill with extreme prejudice in as many ways as possible. The ends justify the means, they think. They never seem to consider what happens when the war is over and the brainwashed now-racist survivors return to civilian life in their own cultures.

I’ve heard an interesting theory at TV Tropes.

Of course, it is all too easy a miscalculation for the human mind to overgeneralize anything, isn’t it? That’s why statistics that measure negligible portions of gargantuan groups of people are universally believed. We meet one guy from Type of Person X and don’t like him, well fine. We meet five…okay, a little odd. We meet twenty or thirty, and none we do like…well, it’s all too easy to jump to the conclusion that they’re all bad, isn’t it? How amazingly seldom does it occur to people that Type of Person X usually represents thousands or millions of times the number of its representatives whom they'd met. A lot of us have our own prejudices as a result. All it takes is a leap in logic. That's all that predjudice is, really, and many if not most of us suffer perhaps to some degree or other from prejudice against someone or something. I, for example, am probably pretty prejudiced against politicians in general. But hey, in my country (and in many others) the system is literally worked out so that avoiding corruption is unnaturally and needlessly difficult even if you’re trying.

But a skin tone? The shape of someone’s hair follicle? The size of their nose? These have to do with what exactly, and who thinks so and why?

Then again (and this ties into what I just said), is that kind of thing--is racism--any more absurd than those people who insist that “you can tell a lot about a person” by their handshake or the way they wear their hat or etc.? It’s all the same thing. Superstition, really. That’s what’s at the heart of all those such things. You see a black cat cross your path, you’re fired from work later that day, it’s because of the unrelated black cat. You meet enough guys who wear their hats a certain way…well, you can see how it goes. Fallacy of Questionable Cause. ad hoc post proster hoc. People are universally frightened by their own ignorance, I think. They’re so desperate to understand the world about them that they will try insanely irrational shortcuts such as those superstitions or pre-judgments of situations or people…like racism.

An ideal human being is someone who could meet 999,999 out of a group of 100,000 randomly assorted individuals with the only things in common between them being things which have no impact on the brain chemistry (like skin tone)—or the soul—and dislike all of the first 999,999 for perfectly coincidental and valid reasons—and then be just as warmly open to the idea of liking the last of the 100,000 at that point as they would have been if that last person had been the first. Because they’d recognize that no matter how stacked the odds may seem from their perspective (the old exrpession does go, "Experience is the mother of illusion"...) there’s no possible way for this one last apple to be as bad as the others in the bunch because of the others in the bunch, so that if it is bad then its for its own reasons, but it has no worse odds of being a bad apple at all. For even infinity stacked against zero is still a no-contest win for zero.

What I’d like to ask of you all is what theories you have (and mentioning what you think of my ideas might help)--and perhaps more importantly, what you think we can do to get the truth better known?


*For those unfamiliar with Western slang, that’s not a vulgarity in its true and original meaning (even though there is a more vulgar counterpart to the phrase which misrepresents that true and original meaning somewhat). The term actually is supposed to refer to something being screwed into your head as by a screwdriver.
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May Ayob
07-27-2011, 06:38 PM
Salaam

I know this is an old thread,but it's really a good one and I don't know why no one responded because it's also an important one.


Originally Posted by ;1224040
What I’d like to ask of you all is what theories you have (and mentioning what you think of my ideas might help)--and perhaps more importantly, what you think we can do to get the truth better known?
You're ideas make good sense, I think It has alot to do with the heart, if indside your heart you believe that people should be divided and treated according to their skin color then it most certainly has to with Pride and Arrogance and maybe Ignorance as well

What we can do is ask God to help us understand the truth and follow it , also we have to make it clear that Racism or any similar discrimination is not to be tolerated. And we should also try to explain why....

I don't know what else but I'm hoping more people Participate even if it's old.

Salaam
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Who Am I?
07-27-2011, 08:37 PM
:sl:

I think that racism happens because of two things: fear, and ignorance. People fear what they don't understand.

I think there is a natural tendency for people to associate with those are most like them. That could be people who speak the same language, have the same religion, culture, but most commonly it's people who look like they do. That in itself is not necessarily racist; that's just human nature. I'm a white guy. All of my friends are also white guys.

Does that make me a racist? No, it doesn't. I associate with and appreciate the contact with people from other backgrounds, and try to initiate contact whenever I can. I think it adds a little variety in my life. But am I as comfortable around them as I am with with my white friends? No. Not because I think I am better or worse than anyone else. I just don't think I have as much in common with a black guy or a Latino as I do with another white guy. They have issues and fears that they deal with that I can't relate to, and vice versa. It doesn't mean that I am better or worse than they are. That's just the way it is.

Now that itself is not wrong. But when you add in the fear and ignorance factors into the equation, that's when you get racism. If I start thinking that I am better than someone else simply based on how we look, then I have a problem. If I am automatically afraid of someone else because of how they look, then I have a problem.

The solution I think is education. That's how you overcome ignorance, and when ignorance is gone, so is fear.
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Futuwwa
08-04-2011, 07:27 PM
I vaguely remember an incident from when I was a kid. I noticed how a black guy had white palms. From that I thought that he's really white under the black, that the black was just an extra layer added for protection against the sun, and that white is the default which everyone has. Yes, that was race-conscious little me ;D

About twenty years later, I proclaimed the shahada in a small prayer room where almost everyone present was black (a few were "only" Middle Eastern tan). First time I had been in a group which was majority non-white. Yet, I didn't feel unnerved as I previously sometimes had in the presence of foreign-looking people. Must have been a residual effect of the shahada :D
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Perseveranze
08-04-2011, 07:43 PM
It's lack of education.


“Abu Dharr, the leader of the tribe of Ghifar, and one who accepted Islam in its early days, narrates:

Once I was conversing with Bilal. Our conversation gave way to a dispute. Angry with him, the following insult burst from my mouth: ‘You cannot comprehend this, O son of a black woman!’

As Islam expressly forbade all kinds of racial, tribal and color discrimination, Bilal was both upset and greatly angered.

Some time later, a man came and told me that the Messenger of God, upon him be peace and blessings, summoned me. I went to him immediately. He said to me:

‘I have been informed that you addressed Bilal as the son of a black woman.’

I was deeply ashamed and could say nothing. God’s Messenger continued his reprimand: ‘This means you still retain the standards and judgements of the pre-Islamic days of ignorance. Islam has eradicated all those false standards or measures judging people by blood, fame, color or wealth. It has established that the best and most honorable of men is he who is the most pious and upright in conduct. Is it right to defame a believer just because he is black?’

Abu Dharr felt profound remorse. He went straight to Bilal’s house and, putting his head on the threshold, said: ‘This head will not rise from here until the blessed feet of Bilal tread on the face of foolish, impolite Abu Dharr.’

Bilal responded: ‘That face deserves to be kissed, not trodden upon,’ and forgave Abu Dharr.”
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Abz2000
08-05-2011, 12:35 AM
we can give them the last major public admonition given by the Prophet (pbuh) at the farewell pilgrimage:

All mankind is from Adam and Eve,
an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab
nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab;
also a white has no superiority over a black
nor a black has any superiority over a white
- except by piety and good action.

and brother malik el shabbaz's letter from hajj:

watch?v=BTOQQz9Eqjc


here's a shorter version:

watch?v=lDkoYJD8kEo

peace
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Yanal
08-05-2011, 01:13 AM
Asalam alaikum,

I have had many encounters of actually seeing racism occur to people around me,we must take a stand. I believe along with the Shaitaan whispering to the people who believe racism is ok in any way also could be a sign of fear,and ignorance.Racism occurs often times out of fear. Many people fear what is different to them and the people around them and what they do not know about or who they don't know. This in turn, makes it scary when you see people who look different than you do and sometimes, you treat those individuals differently because you do not know them,and believe its ok to make fun of them in any regard along with mocking their skin colour.

Those select individuals that believe that this is the right way to go are wrong. If we see racism happening,we should try to prevent it.I believe instead of racism decreasing around this world,its increasing with more and more people going the wrong way with this approach. Insha'Allaah may Allah guide them and help the people around the world who suffer through this throughtout their daily lives,ameen.


Originally Posted by abz2000
we can give them the last major public admonition given by the Prophet (pbuh) at the farewell pilgrimage:

All mankind is from Adam and Eve,
an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab
nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab;
also a white has no superiority over a black
nor a black has any superiority over a white
- except by piety and good action.

and brother malik el shabbaz's letter from hajj:

watch?v=BTOQQz9Eqjc


here's a shorter version:

watch?v=lDkoYJD8kEo

peace
Brother,with your permission I'll attempt to correctly embed them onto this post,insha'Allaah,:).




And Allah knows the best in all regards.
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ardianto
08-05-2011, 03:24 PM
Several years ago in Jakarta International Airport I saw a cute little girl, but she is look like a mixed race kid. I tried to find her parents and I was surprised when I saw them. They are American couple which the daddy is white and the mommy is black.
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Who Am I?
08-05-2011, 05:25 PM
Originally Posted by ardianto
Several years ago in Jakarta International Airport I saw a cute little girl, but she is look like a mixed race kid. I tried to find her parents and I was surprised when I saw them. They are American couple which the daddy is white and the mommy is black.
That is much more common here than it used to be. I read something online last year about the results from the 2010 census taken here and the most surprising thing was that there were more people who classed themselves as "mixed race" than ever before. In the past, people of mixed race tended to identify with one parent more than the other, but apparently that is changing now.
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Abz2000
08-05-2011, 09:12 PM
Originally Posted by Yanal
Brother,with your permission I'll attempt to correctly embed them onto this post,insha'Allaah,.
thank you for getting the info out brother, i couldn't embed or post direct links as i'm new,
peace to those who follow the guidance
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Mister Agenda
08-23-2011, 06:49 PM
One method that has been used to educate children about racism is a 'jigsaw classroom', where the teacher deliberately teams up children of diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds to work on projects together. It is harder to be ignorant about people you work closely with.
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Ansariyah
08-24-2011, 03:13 PM
What racism? Where I'm @ Everyone is marrying anything but their own race. I think even the racists secretly suffer from a severe case of jungle fever lol
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Futuwwa
08-26-2011, 11:51 PM
Originally Posted by Yanoorah
What racism? Where I'm @ Everyone is marrying anything but their own race. I think even the racists secretly suffer from a severe case of jungle fever lol
What beautiful place is that?
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