Racism: The Reason Of Conflicts Between Societies, Countries, And Individuals

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The speech given by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was an evolving experience for the mindset for all those who opposed the rights of people from a different race than theirs. “ I Have A Dream…”, is a speech well known for its acknowledgement towards the fact that people are not defined by the colour of their skin, not their race, nor their ethnicity, but by their character and personality. We all know what racism is, but have we stopped to wonder what effects it has had over a multitude of people? The answer to that is that we witness the effects of racism all around us everyday, whether we realize it or not, and whether our subconscious tends to look at racism in a negative or positive way. Racism is a factor that affects people world-wide. It has been going on for years, from the 15ᵗʰ to 16ᵗʰ century, to today, where people have evolved and have come in all sizes, shapes, colours, and genders (“Racism”).

Racism isn’t just the opposition of people who are of a different colour. A lot of people believe that racism is when races are against one another, such as the long-time example of whites versus African Americans. However, most of the racist problems that exist these days are not based upon this one page, and revolve around multiple issues a person may have with another person. Racism can be found if you are considered “poor” in your environment, or if your clothes aren’t up to the standards of the others around you. Racism is one of the main reasons that starts feuds and conflicts between societies, countries, and individuals, which is why it should be limited and eventually be put an end to.

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The first reason why racism should be put an end to is because they cause differences between people with different views or ideas, which may cause them to feel insecure. There are multiple examples providing proof to prove that this is a fact. The first evidence that many people around the world suffer with is food insecurity. Food insecurity is one of the still remaining racism signs that still exists, causing people with low food standards to face racism. A lot of people with low incomes, or not enough resources can’t afford the food that most people in this world can afford. According to The Nation, “ Food insecurity is stratified across racial lines, affecting less than 9% of white households in America, but nearly 22% percent of black households and 18% of Latino households” (Kaufmann, “Want to Eradicate Hunger in America? Take on Racism.”).

Another common evidence is that global racism causes insecurity problems to world leaders as well. World leaders have to go through insecurity, which isn’t necessarily a good thing for them as well as the country. An article from 2018 states that Turkey’s presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin said, “ The world feels insecure in the face of increasing unilateralism and racism and when one world leader tells another that they can’t survive even for two weeks without his help” (Ajansı, “Unilateralism, Racism Top Causes of Global Insecurity”). Stuff like this not only causes problems, but it can also cause feuds between the countries that caused the insecurity.

Racism causes many people to suffer, and go through things which people shouldn’t normally go through. They start to hate themselves for the way they were born, or the family they belong to, because they can’t fulfill the needs of the ones around them. Racism causes people to suffer due to the colour of their skin, rather than feeling proud of it. “ People feel insecure about their appearance and want to adapt to social ideals” (Razzetti, “Why Racism Is About the Color of the Mind, Not Your Skin”).

Aggressive Behavior

Another reason is that racism causes chaos between one and another, such as fights, bullying, or even gang wars. One major source of spreading nasty racist comments, or posting posts that contain racist information is social media. Social media, posts, or comments can spark bullying due to racism, which brings the effects to public places, such as schools. At Edwardsville, a school in Illinois, “ Students told News 4 there were several racist posts shared on Snapchat throughout the week that led to as many as five fights Tuesday and students threatened to bring a gun to school” (Onge, “After Racist Social Posts Leads to Fights, Edwardsville School Officials Pledge Change.”).

Racist comments or posts aren’t always intentional, or are believed to be taken as a joke, but there are multiple incidents around the world where a person has taken a racist comment as a personal attack. Many students are put to the test with social media applications, as they can face anonymous racist bullying anytime of the day. Not only on social media, but students can face bullying at school. “ Racist bullying in schools can range from ill-considered remarks, which are not intended to be hurtful, to deliberate physical attacks causing serious injury”, as mentioned previously (“Racist Bullying”).

As teenagers are growing up, when they face racism, they feel as if they have been placed on the bottom of the social ladder. “In particular black and minority young ethnic groups of people have found themselves ‘immobilized’ at the bottom of the economic ladder and cut adrift from the values of mainstream society. The acute social marginalization faced by black youth has seemingly resulted in their responding to their powerlessness with frustration, rage and the creation of alternative social and cultural values that promotes and normalizes gang membership and violence” (Joseph and Gunter 3). This causes them to create problems in various places as a side effect.

Coercing the People

Last, but not least, racism causes, or forces, many people who are victimized to change or edit their outlook or personality, to “fit in” or be a part of the crowd. One of the most popular reasons, which has been repeated over and over again is social media. Although there is no specific site to prove that people change their physique or skin colour using apps due to racist comments on posts they post on social media, and everyone is sure to see several posts of these types on Instagram or Snapchat.

This is significantly popular in the feminine part of the media, when people do nose-jobs, or eye-brow lifting, which makes them more similar to the girls around them. Many people are body-shamed, or put in insecurities about their bodies because of their race, which causes them to be placed apart from the “accepted” people of the world. This sort of racism still continues throughout the world, and while it is becoming less, a lot of people are still the victims, causing them to feel discriminated against.

One of the biggest forms of racism against people which causes people to change is the facial wash ads many people witness almost everyday when they turn on their television. Many of the ads show a woman who is dark-skinned, or tanned, washing her face with the soap brand, and having a lighter coloured skin in the end. The soap brand is usually supported with the motto, “ Use for a whiter skin colour!” This brings a visual representation of the types of appearance the society prefers for people to have, mainly focusing on women. This causes many women throughout the world to change just because they are not up to the standards of what is advertised. “ Vaseline is offering a Facebook app in India that allows users to whiten their profile pictures on the site” (Hernandez, “Not White Enough? There's a Facebook App for That!”). Not only that, but multiple filters on Snapchat allow users to change their skin colour.

This brings us to the end on the topic of racism, and what to do about it. Racism as we know has caused multiple issues throughout the world. There have been protests and rallies, throughout the world, which have taken place to stop racism, and to have world peace. Racism has caused many people to suffer, physically and mentally, and has caused people to reach to the end of their limits, making them do terrible things, which even includes the risk of taking their own life to satisfy others, and to end their suffering.

People like Martin Luther King Jr., Malcolm X, Rosa Parks, and many more have fought for their rights, and for their people’s rights. Going back to Martin Luther King Jr.’s famous speech, his aim was for his children and the next generation to live in a world where children are not judged by their skin, colour, or size, but by their personality or characteristics. He aimed for that because when we were created, we were created on the basis of equality. Everyone on this Earth is human. They’re not necessarily the same colour, or the same size, which allows them to create or have their own qualities. However, the way we treat each other, and the way we behave with each other shows our true human nature, and equality treatment given to the people we communicate with.

To conclude this, racism causes people to face conflicts, whether it’s an individual or a country, or even an entire continent. Racism causes conflicts both internally, meaning between a person and themselves, a conflict being faced mentally, and externally, meaning with others, whether with their friends, colleagues, or strangers. Racism should be put to an end, which can be done if everyone comes together, looking and then trying to understand the problems a person may face due to insolent and rude comments given by others, and how it may affect the person and their mental health.

Works Cited

  1. “'Unilateralism, Racism Top Causes of Global Insecurity'.” Anadolu Ajansı, www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/unilateralism-racism-top-causes-of-global-insecurity/1272615. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
  2. Adekunle, Adefemi. “Gangs Revisited: What's a Gang and What's Race Got to Do with It? Politics and Policy into Practice.” Academia.edu - Share Research, www.academia.edu/9611254/Gangs_Revisited_What_s_a_Gang_and_What_s_Race_Got_to_Do_with_It_Politics_and_Policy_into_Practice. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
  3. Hernandez, Daisy. “Not White Enough? There's a Facebook App for That!” Colorlines, 18 Apr. 2015, www.colorlines.com/articles/not-white-enough-theres-facebook-app. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
  4. Kaufmann, Greg. “Want to Eradicate Hunger in America? Take on Racism.” The Nation, 4 Feb. 2019, www.thenation.com/article/archive/hunger-food-insecurity-racism-mariana-chilton/. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
  5. Onge, Kim St. “After Racist Social Posts Leads to Fights, Edwardsville School Officials Pledge Change.” KMOV.com, 7 Nov. 2019, www.kmov.com/news/after-racist-social-posts-leads-to-fights-edwardsville-school-officials/article_f56ea882-0039-11ea-8de4-ff809a7235c7.html. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
  6. “Racism.” Anti-Defamation League, www.adl.org/racism.
  7. “Racist Bullying.” Beyond Bullying - Welcome to the Beyond Bullying Website, www.beyondbullying.com/racistbullying.html. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
  8. Razzetti, Gustavo, and Gustavo Razzetti. “Why Racism Is About the Color of the Mind, Not Your Skin - Gustavo Razzetti.” Liberationist, 29 Sept. 2019, liberationist.org/why-racism-is-about-the-color-of-the-mind-not-your-skin/. Accessed 11 Mar. 2020.
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