shivver: (Carver)
[personal profile] shivver
On my Facebook feed yesterday, there was a discussion between two friends-of-friends (I don't know either person directly) about Donald Trump: one was pro and the other was anti. It was a civil discussion, but one bit bothered me a lot.

The anti person mentioned something about Trump being racist, and in the pro person's reply, she said this: "I don't think Trump is racist, though he has made some comments that have made me cringe. I don't think he made them in a racist mindset - he was just stating his beliefs."

Is that what people think? That you're only racist if you consciously think, "I'm going to be racist right now"? Because it sounds to me like that's what this woman thinks: that when Mr. Trump makes a comment denigrating a group of people based on their skin color or place of origin, he truly believes what he's saying, that these people are inferior, but because he's not thinking "I'm racist" at the time, it's okay, he's not racist.

Maybe that's the problem: people don't think they're racist because racism is rooted in their beliefs and is not just something you do when you decide to do it. Fixing it requires evaluating what you believe, recognizing that blackness in your soul, and working to change it, and all three steps are increasingly difficult. It's so much easier to just rationalize the problem away, to convince yourself that you're not that bad because you're not intending to be.
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