Saturday, September 1, 2007

It's not about "races", it's about behavior

I would really, really like to see race dropped as the criterion for pretty much anything... unless it's effective and just re-adjustment of the results of of previous racial prejudice... aka Affirmative Action, which I think has (in the US) pretty much accomplished what it set out to do.

Racial prejudice makes us unjustly suspicious of good people who mean us no harm, and whose friendship and support might benefit us (and vice versa.)

Racial prejudice can make us unduly trusting of abusive or even monstrous people who happen to look and/or speak like us.

Overcorrecting for racial prejudice (reverse discrimination) makes us accept horrible behavior from some people, since they're from an 'oppressed minority', even when their horrible behavior is directed at other people who look and/or speak like them.

Racial prejudice (or overcorrecting for it) can lead us to leave those victims insufficiently protected, since 'those people should take care of their own'.

The rules should be very simple. if someone's a criminal, they get arrested. If someone's a victim, they get protected. If someone's a neighbor (and isn't known to be bad), you're neighborly with them. Your kids play with their kids. You loan each other sugar and flour. You may go to church together. You celebrate your shared values.

It should never be about skin color, even if someone vicious, or simply ignorant or thoughtless, on one side or another tries to make it an issue. It's about how well people treat each other, how trustworthy they are, how honest, how well they behave.

The bad ones need stiff motivation to change their behavior, knowing the the good folks of any color or background will come to each others' aid. The incorrigible ones need to be removed from society.

Color is not an issue. Behavior is.

All the good folks, the ones who take care of each other, gather around the village fire at night, and help comfort and protect each other from the darkness that will, to some extent, always be outside the circle of light.

I hope we can finally drop the 'race' issue once and for all, and concentrate on the things that are really important.

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