RE: Definition of Racism (without rent-a-riot)

From: Harvey Newstrom (
Date: Fri Aug 10 2001 - 07:59:22 MDT

Lee Corbin wrote,
> My usage of the term needs criticism: "A racist is someone who is
> automatically antagonistic towards someone else just because of
> that person's race."

I think this matches my definition. It depends on how extensive
"antagonistic" needs to be. Crossing to the other side of the street to
avoid one race and not another would seem slightly antagonistic or rude. I
would classify this as slightly racist. It is too bad that a decision is
made on race, but a stranger in a strange neighborhood probably shouldn't
try to be nice and polite to strangers.

> > Is there any good reason to split hairs with these terms,
> except to be able
> > to practice prejudice and discrimination while claiming not to
> be racist?
> Harvey, please give some of the people here more credit than that.
> Like you, many really do want to come to the truth about a very
> difficult issue.

Agreed. I retract any implication that people here are trying to do this.
It is my own limited thinking that prevents me from seeing a good reason to
do this. In my mind racism is the belief, prejudice is an assumption made
on that belief, and discrimination is an action based on that assumption. I
don't see any value in trying to define scenarios where actions can be
defined to take place without assumptions, or where assumptions can be
defined to take place without beliefs.

Harvey Newstrom <> <>

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