Here’s the rule:

In every nation, there is one and only one socioeconomically-dominant demographic (whether ethnic, racial, or religious in nature), and it is that demographic that will commit the most — and the most egregious — acts of prejudice in that nation.

That rule applies all over the world. In America, it’s White Anglo-Saxon protestants (WASPs), and nonwhite minorities suffer. In China, it’s Han Chinese, and Uighurs and Tibetans (among others) suffer. In Japan, it’s the majority Japanese, and it’s the minority Ainu of Hokkaido province who suffer. In Rwanda, it’s the Tutsi who are socioeconomically dominant, and it’s the Hutus who tend to face greater hardship (which was what led to the genocide in the 1990's). And in Australia, it’s the Whites…and nonwhites face greater obstacles to advancement.

What I’m getting at here is that I feel it will help you to step back and take a larger view of human society. After all, if all people around the world are pretty much the same, then all people should have the same degree of racism, right? Then why do WASPs in America commit so much more (and more egregious) racism? The above rule is the answer.

What this means is that every nation faces issues with racism and prejudice (some nations more than others), and that every nation needs to address those issues and take concrete steps to minimize the effects of such racism (though such can never be truly eliminated).

P.S. I was raised racist and it took me a long time to unlearn my racism. Your mother is from Indonesia, and my wife is from next door in the Philippines. When I took her to meet my family in Mississippi, as soon as we stepped out of the car, my mother pulled me off to one side and told me she wished I’d just married a Black girl instead — not because she liked Blacks (like the rest of my family there, she was very racist), but because she liked Asians even less. That rule above is what I’ve learned over several decades of observation and soul-searching concerning why my family — who were good, well-meaning people who held no actual malice towards anyone — was still so racist. I came to understand that racism doesn’t require malice, but only requires untoward assumptions about other races or ethnic groups.

Written by

Retired Navy. Inveterate contrarian. If I haven’t done it, I’ve usually done something close.

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