Sociology

The Hypocrisy of Racism



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The hypocrisy of name-calling and racism

There seems to be an overall fear and anger developing around Muslims in the UK and it is very tempting, especially when we are angry, to call people racist, stereotypic names. But blanket name- calling and racism lump us all together while disproving and negating what we are trying to say. That is one reason why one should resist the temptation to label others with racist names, if we are not to sink to their level too. It simply needs a few people to agree with one another in the name-calling for it to move from just words to actions, as some fanatical Muslims are proving succinctly. We would be surprised what we are capable of when we are encouraged and egged-on by others.

For me, name-calling on racial terms is both unacceptable and wrong if we are seeking respect for ourselves and our rights too. If the Muslims are our enemy, and I would dispute that for every Muslim, then behaving exactly like our enemy won't win any battles as we would be too predictable in our reactions. Taking an unexpected and opposite line usually has better effect, and would prevent Muslims, or other racial groups siding with us, from being alienated too.

It is very easy to be short-sighted and insulting when dealing with difference. But using our own fears to tackle the problem, instead of resilience and courage, will not help in the end except to keep us in the same morass of negativity without any real solutions.

Muslims are not dependent upon what we do for their own actions. But, if I were a Muslim who wore a turban of some kind, who was against all fundamentalist activity, and who then read this article in solidarity only to see that I was called a 'Raghead' or something else, and lumped with everyone else, how would that make me feel empathy for Britons who are mainly being insensitively racist to feel superior? If we prefer to turn everyone into the enemy because of our irrational fears, we shouldn't be surprised when they act like it.

If someone has a beef with a black woman, I would hate to be lumped in with her simply because I was black too. That is the main point here. We, especially in Western societies, value our individuality and uniqueness. Why should we deny them to others, unless we are being hypocritical?

One simple lesson we all can learn is that by isolating the worst offenders, divide and rule, we have far more chance of stopping any undesirable action than pretending that everyone is guilty of it

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More about this author: Elaine Sihera

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