When slavery was abolished in America (and elsewhere), a residual effect of slavery was the racism that has pervaded our society, even to the present time. Of course, discrimination has been around since the beginning of the ages, whether the dividing line is established over color, shades of one color (for example, dark brown against light brown), shape of the eyes, place of birth, religion–and the list goes on. Mankind is divided.
We have chosen here to explore the legacy of the Trans-Atlantic slave trade in America and the racial divide stemming from it. That divide is White vs. Black, or as one commentator has said, “The lighter hue” vs. the “darker hue.” Racism can be expressed on both sides in a variety of ways. Some racism is becoming more and more glaring, perhaps more prevalent– at least more in the news. But there are also subtler forms of racism that need to be noticed and talked about.
Explore with us this controversial topic…
Prominent in the news during the past few years is the topic of “Police Brutality” –or at least, prejudiced, uneven treatment of African Americans by law enforcement officers. Several clips follow that might put some light and balance into that most important topic.
Many whites who think racism is a thing of the past might be surprised to hear the description in the clips below of the racism encountered daily by African Americans in America.
Even if a person isn’t prejudiced openly toward African Americans, there is a strong possibility that he is not sensitive to the issues that offend African Americans around him. The mere fact of living in a business or social environment that is mainly white can create a blindness to the needs, frustrations, and injustices in the everyday life of African Americans in our culture.
Although individuals in a community may have gotten past racism for the most part, there are still remnants of it in the culture around them, buried in laws, institutions, policy, business practices, and more. These have to be brought to light and purged from our American way of life!
Increasingly used in the discussion about race is the term, unconscious bias. Bias Studies are showing that even though people think they aren’t racists (toward any people group), they still have favorable bias toward their own group, not necessarily based on skin color. And they have negative opinions deeply held about other groups.
Surprising to many African Americans, it appears that many whites are basically clueless about the challenges faced by African Africans in our country. Hopefully, the racial turmoil in many communities might have the positive effect of waking up White America to the needs of other races around them.
Many whites don’t realize the privilege they enjoy in education, the job market, social structure because they are white—the open doors they take for granted that their African American brothers must push and struggle to gain access to.
And then there is that false aura of superiority among whites-either a real or perceived attitude encountered by non-whites. Codified by law in the past, deeply entrenched during the days and thereafter from slavery, even justified religiously to defend the practices of slavery in all its oppression, White Superiority is an attitude that defies God’s Word. “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” Philippians 2: 3