Racism. Bigotry. Phobia. Call it what you like, it is an ugly phenomenon. It assumes that one person considers himself somehow superior to another, based on nothing more than race, skin colour, ethnicity. And make no mistake, folks, in the United States of America, racism is on the rise, is reaching its highest point since the 1960s. We have nothing to be proud of. I started this post last night with four examples of racist incidents, and by the time I went to bed, I was up to seven incidents. In a span of a few short days. WHY????
It was only last month that two men were arrested by police because they were waiting at a Starbucks for their friend to join them before placing their order. Did I mention that the men were black?
And since then …
- 5 Black Women Were Told to Golf Faster. Then the Club Called the Police.
- On Saturday in a largely white suburban community in Dover Township, York County, the women began playing at Grandview Golf Club before being told that they were moving too slowly. As they teed off on the second hole, they were approached by a former county commissioner who, according to The York Daily Record, serves in an advisory role for the golf course. He asked them twice to leave and threatened to cancel their memberships over their pace of play.
- University Official Allegedly Didn’t Like the Music in a Coffee Shop, Forced Firing of Barista
- A Duke University official allegedly forced the school to fire a campus barista who played rap music inside the store last week, despite the fact that the barista immediately turned off the song at his request.
- Congress Rolls Back Anti-Discrimination Auto Loan Rule
- The guidance, issued in 2013, was intended to limit discriminatory practices in the auto loan business. Congress repealed the guidance using the Congressional Review Act, a little-known law that allows Congress to undo the rules issued by administrative agencies and government regulators.
- 3 Black Teenage Scientists Had A Breakthrough, Then Came The Trolls
- At a time when they should have heard nothing but accolades and encouragement, some unidentified people on 4chan, an Internet bulletin board where racists and homophobes have posted anonymous nonsense, began to put up bigoted comments about the young women.
- Mom on College Tour Calls Police on Two Native American Teens: They Made Her “Nervous”
- It was their dream school. But when the brothers joined a Colorado State University tour, they got an experience that was far from what they were expecting after driving seven hours from New Mexico. Two police officers pulled Thomas Kanewakeron Gray, 19, and Lloyd Skanahwati Gray, 17, from the tour to ask them questions. Turns out a mom on the tour had called the police saying the brothers, who are Native Americans from the Mohawk tribe, “just really stand out,” because they were acting “odd” and wearing dark clothing
- A Black Yale Graduate Student Took a Nap in Her Dorm’s Common Room. So a White Student Called Police
- A white person voices suspicions about an innocuous person of color. Police are summoned. And the encounter is posted on social media, sparking outrage about racial profiling.
- St. Louis Grocery Clerk Humiliates Black Couple by Accusing Them of Fraud: ‘Racial Profiling is Not Good, Bro’
- St. Louis area grocery clerk lost his job after accusing a black couple of fraud when they tried to purchase a money order to pay their rent.
And it isn’t only African-Americans who are being targeted, but also Asians, Muslims, and other Middle Eastern and Arab communities. Last November, the FBI issued a report detailing the rise in crimes motivated by racial bias. In an article that month, the editorial board of The Washington Post noted that “the groups against whom crimes rose by double digits were the focus of inflammatory rhetoric by Donald Trump over the course of his presidential campaign.”
Remember that phrase we all used way back in elementary school, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”? Guess what, folks … it’s a lie. The wounds inflicted by ‘sticks and stones’ eventually heal. But words can and do hurt, and those wounds often never heal, but rather lead to a spreading infection. I firmly believe that the majority of people in this nation are decent people who would never dream of hurting another simply because of the colour of his skin, or because a woman is wearing a hijab. But, obviously, there are far too many people who take it to heart when the ‘man’ who is supposed to be the leader, the example for the nation says that Mexicans are criminals and rapists. People listen when they hear Trump say, “Black guys counting my money! I hate it. … I think that the guy is lazy. And it’s probably not his fault, because laziness is a trait in blacks”.
Donald Trump and Mike Pence both have a history of racism, from Trump’s refusal to rent apartments to African-Americans to Pence’s anti-LGBT legislation in his home state of Indiana. Unfortunately, while most of us are smart enough, compassionate enough, caring enough to not be swayed by these two men, there are others who are not. Racism has never completely gone away, though some may have believed it did. But in the last two years, it has been on the rise at an alarming rate, fed and fueled by the leaders of this nation.
I have no solutions to offer, but incidences like those I mentioned at the beginning of this post are intolerable and I find I cannot simply ignore them, I must speak out, for if we ignore them, they become normalized and before long, nobody thinks much about it. We cannot allow this to happen. This is nothing to be proud of, and we all share in the shame of this nation.