Salvageable has put together a four-part series that is worth your time. Here are the links.
- Racism without race (part four)
- Racism without race (part three)
- Racism without race (part two)
- Racism without race (part one of four)
How does the series begin?
Biologically, all human beings belong to the same race. Although theorists over the years have tried to identify anywhere from three to twelve races, DNA evidence confirms what mixed families have shown all along—we are all one race. The holy writings of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam all agree that every human being is descended from Adam and Eve. Nonreligious scientists also agree that every Homo sapiens sapiens living today has a common ancestor whom those scientists have nicknamed “Eve.” Various other theories about ancestry have been proposed, ranging from the thought that a small percentage of people alive today have Neanderthal ancestors (based on interpretation of DNA samples) to the thought that a percentage of people alive today have extraterrestrial ancestors (based on various blood types). Even outlier notions of the origin of contemporary humanity, though, concur that all humans today belong to the same family tree and do not come from different races. (continued here)
So if the term race does not make any sense with respect to human beings, then the term racism does not make any sense. So, what is the basis that people are actually using for discrimination? In his second post Salvageable explains how “the modern concept of racism is closely linked to nationalism and culturalism”.
What can I add to Salvageable‘s series? Well, I was going to leave what follows as a comment on his last post, but I decided that what Salvageable had written was worth advertising. Thus, what follows is the comment I considered leaving. As you can see, my comment became a post of my own.
I agree that race does not exist, but not all cultures are equally good. We risk approving of this idiotic notion we call multiculturalism, which proclaims that all cultures are equally good.
Consider this definition of culture, which includes the customary beliefs, social forms, and material traits of a racial group, of course.😏🙄
Some beliefs are not true. Some are even intrinsically evil. Consider some examples.
- Communism and tendencies towards tyrannical regimes are based in the culture of a people.
- To be implemented, the elites within a people must find human sacrifice and concentration camps socially and culturally acceptable.
- To be widespread, large numbers of individual people must find abortion and infanticide socially and culturally acceptable.
So, what is the point I wish to make? What people believe makes a difference. Sometimes the difference is weird. We promote the sacrifice of the unborn to the gods of reckless sex. Yet at the same time we frown on the sacrifice on human beings to stone idols. That is, because our culture approves, we promote human sacrifice and prohibit human sacrifice.
Depending upon the standards used to justify them, we call some beliefs superstitious and others scientific. The distinction between what we call superstitious and what we call scientific does not always make sense. Because cultural beliefs include presuppositions, cultural beliefs can override logic and reason. This is why Socrates made this observation.
The unexamined life is not worth living. (from APOLOGY By Plato translated by Benjamin Jowett)
Therefore, some cultural beliefs and the knowledge associated with those beliefs doesn’t have much benefit and may even be evil, and some cultural beliefs and the knowledge associated with those beliefs are useful and may even be good. Wisdom is knowing the difference, and such wisdom, in varying degrees, is also part of each people’s culture.
- The current discussion over racism is being driven by an organization named Black Lives Matter. As IF WE DON’T BELIEVE THE TRUTH, THEN WE BELIEVE LIES argues, Black Lives Matters (BLW) is a Marxist organization, a wolf in sheep’s clothing. BLW is using the issue of race to bully and silence opposition.
- Where freedom of speech and publication are promoted, cultural beliefs, especially religious beliefs, can quickly spread among peoples, replacing the beliefs they already have. There is nothing wrong with that. We should all strive for cultural improvement. Here is how we should do it.
Be egalitarian regarding persons. Be elitist regarding ideas. — Peter Kreeft of Boston College (from here)
Seeking the best ideas is not bigotry. Prejudging people just because of their “race”, sex, or creed, however, can be problematic.
- The people of the United States share some common beliefs. The values expressed by the Declaration of Independence, for example, is one of the things we use to share. Those values are under attack, and multiculturalism, as it is being promulgated in our public schools and universities, is one of the ideologies being used to make that attack. To restore a free debate over our society’s cultural beliefs, we need to get our government out of the education business. Parents need school choice for their children.