Facts About Racism

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‘Racism’ – a word that evokes so much emotions; most of the time, negatively fierce, is actually considered to be a modern concept. Although people of different races, color and religion have co-existed since time immemorial; the earlier divisions among men was based on their profession, wealth or religion. The discrimination based on color or origin was a later development; which, unfortunately, continues to this day! Despite our evolvement and development in various fields of science, medicine and technology; some people still refuse to believe that a person’s color or race does not define his character or intellect.

And that is a fact; read on, to know more.

Fact 1:
Although the word racism often brings images of blacks being the victims; statistics beg to differ! In the year 2013, the number of murders committed by blacks was 5,375 while those committed by whites was 4,396. When these numbers are set against a backdrop where whites form 63 percent of the population and blacks are only 13 percent; the picture of crime-rate gets clearer! And add to this the fact that 50 percent of the prison population is comprised of blacks!

Fact 2:
Many experts believe that racism has its roots in political grouping, which commenced with slavery and colonization; rather than human evolution or scientific developments. The number of races that have existed, and their superiority or inferiority, has been more influenced by political inclinations and purposes than by anthropology or biology.

Fact 3:
Division among people has existed in society throughout human history; however, it was not based on culture or color. Aristotle divided people as civilized and barbarian based on whether they organized themselves as city-states or not. The ancient Romans categorized people based on the legal structure they followed to organize their lives.

Fact 4:
Did you know that genetic variation is higher within a race rather than between two different races? As surprising as it sounds; if you were to compare the genes of two random Italians, it would be as equally different as that between an Italian and a Chinese!

And for those who think that variations in color are the root cause of all trouble; here are some scientific facts. Skin color is not determined by your race but rather by your geographic region and ultraviolet rays. That explains why the natives of Alaska and Canada are dark-skinned; they are more exposed to UV rays!

And for those who still think that people’s intellect and superiority is routed in their genes, here’s some bad news. When the Human Genome Project unraveled the human genetic code, they realized that genetically humans had only one race – “Homo sapiens”!

Fact 7:
Racism has not always been directed from the fair-skinned to the dark. Even in ancient times, fair-skinned people have been ill-treated for their color! When dark-skinned rulers assumed power, they degraded the lighter-skinned contemporaries as the “pale degraded race of Arvad”!

Fact 8:
Racism seems to have permeated even into childhood! Federal statistics show that 1 in every 4 students become the target of racial or ethnic bias during a typical school year. Now you know what they mean when they say children follow in the footsteps of parents!

Fact 9:
Some people could say that racism is more deep-rooted than that; although, it would amount to twisting of scientific facts. Research indicates that babies as young as six months notice the differences between races. Well, common sense would tell us that it just shows good observation, not racism!

Fact 10:
But all is not bleak; people are taking steps towards ending racism. California banned use of race and ethnicity in university admissions and the US made inter-racial marriages legal from 1967.

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