Unless you’ve been living under a rock, many of us have heard or read in the news numerous issues regarding racism and discrimination within the last few weeks. It seems nations worldwide are dealing with the topic, for instance the UK has had a flurry of issues regarding the political party UKIP, and whether protecting British homogeneity is racist or a legitimate concern. Ireland a few weeks ago had a ‘racist’ problem due to a lynch mob who protested outside a Roma gypsy home, the inhabitants of which were believed to be engaged in various criminal gangs and acts in the area. The US at present is under extreme scrutiny with regards to its law enforcement system, with the prolific deaths of 3 unarmed African American individuals at the hands of White policemen: Michael Brown, Tamir Rice, and Eric Garner. However though ethnicity undeniably plays a part in all the instances above, there is considerable evidence in the media these days just how multifaceted and widespread the use of the term can be, to the point where it loses all meaning, and, more importantly, is being abused to legitimize crime, and further personal agendas.
Truth as Racism
Comments on current affairs often requires accuracy and vagueness, simultaneously. Political correctness is there to provide just that, and a plethora of other things: equality, fairness and sensitivity to issues of gender, race and culture from all parts of the world. However, we have gotten to the stage where almost anything, or anyone can be branded a ‘racist’ or ‘bigot’ for simply disagreeing with someone of a different ethnicity. Sometimes just citing the simple facts is seen as prejudice. And now it seems we avoid addressing the issues of ethnicity and race due to fears of being branded a racist. Contrastingly, by and large, issues regarding such ‘racists’ receive the most media attention, and the majority of the ‘racist’ labels are directed at White ethnicities. But racism should (and does) work both ways, however ‘selective racism’ seems to be the prevalent theme, while people of colour can never be racist.
Firstly, to be branded a ‘racist’ or bigot’ when expressing genuine legitimate concern is offensive, as is hurling racist remarks or comments. Being termed a ‘Racist’ is career damaging, whether you’re a politician, news reporter, or anything else for that matter. A prime example of this is the racism reporting site set up in the aftermath of the Ferguson protests. The Tumblr blog ‘Racists getting Fired’ invites people to aim at getting people who post perceived racist comments online, fired from their jobs, by hunting down the persons employer, and informing them of their ‘racist’ employee. However who is to determine what constitutes as racism? Recently, health food company Holland and Barrett were accused of ‘racism’ for selling Royal Jelly skin Whitening Cream which is primarily used for lighting sun and dark spots. This is just one incredible end of the ‘racism’ cry spectrum. However regarding the Tumblr page, having visited the site, there are many ‘racist’ remarks that are not , by definition of the term, racist, that are still targeted.
“Racism -the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.”
Of course racism exists. In all countries, from all rankings. The issue is however that the term is abused, thrown around loosely and carelessly, in situations where race is clearly not the issue at hand. The recent US police shootings for instance, indicate more of an issue with regards to US Law enforcement and militarization of the Police force then it does of racism, especially considering US Police have shot dead more white individuals then black in recent years. The Irish ‘lynch mob’ protest at the Roma home, while undoubtedly not a right or peaceful protest by any means, did provide insight to the legitimate fears many in Irish society have of Roma immigrants, many of which engage in theft, crime and aggressive begging on Irish streets. Roma crime is reported, but largely left to flourish, as Irish authorities fear being labeled racist to the point of protecting what has been described as a “weak and vulnerable target”. If those that engage in thief and crime are “weak” and vulnerable” targets, what does that make the people they steal from? Subsequently, anyone to utter the words ‘Roma gypsy’ and ‘crime’ in the same sentence is branded a hateful racist, despite criminality being an intrinsic part of Roma culture for decades. So the criminals are protected, and the victims criminalized. This is the effect of PC today.
Political Correctness Is Damaging
The ever pressing urge for the media and politics to be politically correct is resulting in the avoidance and addressing of serious issues, which go un-dealt with for fear of the R bomb. And those who use the term carelessly and unscrupulously succeed in stifling opposition, and in certain instances, obstructing justice. An obvious example of this was the sexual exploitation and abuse of over 1000 girls in UK’s Rotherham, in which predominantly white British girls, some under the age of 12, were being groomed and exploited by a group of predators of Pakistani heritage. While calls had been made to the police regarding the issue previously, Police postponed investigating claims, due to fears of any investigation being branded ‘Racist’. Somehow, a gang of men raping and abusing children went unperturbed because the national Police force were afraid to intervene. In this regard it would seem very much so like the traditional notions of ‘racism’ turned upside down- these men were protected and the children abused for so long because somehow, they’re race placed them above the law, above claims regarding their activities, and above investigation.
Stroking the flames of Racism in every opportunity is erroneous, overdone, and becoming an instant go to for many media outlets and individuals in certain cases to in a way actually attempt to legitimize crime. Political correctness has resulted in injustices within the authoritative and political spectrums, as following standard procedure, simply expressing concern, or speaking the truth can result in cries of racism and bigotry. It has recently resulted in the abuse of hundreds of young British girls, mindless riots and violence in response to a police officer following standard procedure after being attacked, and who knows how many cases of unpunished, yet blatant criminality.
Those who shout the cries of racism loudest, are often most racist themselves, seeing ONLY the race in a situation, and little else.