In the academic arena there is a saying, “If it is not written down, it did not happen,” and Black history is seldom written on the pages of American history. Racism is also subject matter that does NOT make its way onto the pages of American history, and is often treated as a taboo subject or a four-letter word. Author and Atlantic columnist Ta-Nehisi Coates has said that, for Black people in America, Racism is a physical experience of fear and violence.
Slavery created racial segregation and institutionalized Racism. Most dictionaries define “Racism” as racial hatred based on the color of one’s skin. As Dick Gregory said, “White is not a color; it’s an attitude.” Some add that Racism is racial prejudice plus the institutional and systemic power to dominate, exclude, discriminate against, abuse, and "CONTROL" targeted groups of people based on a designation of race. Racism is an insidious Pathological disease. White folks like to call Blacks, Racist. Yet, historically and traditionally and culturally, Blacks cannot be Racist. We DO NOT Control anything in America.
In their book Black Power: The Politics of Liberation in America, the late Black activist Kwame Ture (formerly Stokely Carmichael) and university professor Charles V. Hamilton further explore the term “Institutional Racism,” which they define as being any system of inequality based on race. It can occur in public government bodies, private business corporations (such as media outlets), and universities (public and private). All of Racism’s many Pathological definitions trigger White America’s misrepresentations, lies, anger, frustration, self-defense, and denial. America’s “prove it” syndrome requires Blacks to provide irrefutable proof of Racism. In other words, “if you can’t definitively prove Racism, or that I AM a Racist, it isn’t so.”
The implication is if one cannot produce irrefutable evidence of clear, blatant, and intentional bias, then Racism must be banned as a possibility. But this is both silly as an intellectual claim and dangerous as a policy standard, especially in a nation with the Racist history of the United States. White America’s Racism and the concomitant White Privilege allows White America to act as its own judge and jury in determining they are not Racist. Black America, without having a judge and a jury but with the “negative advantage” of being the Targets of White Racism and White Privilege, know better.
The Struggle Continues.