Rehab for Racists
12 Steps May Not Be Enough?
Gaffes aren't just confined to the Tea Party wing of the GOP, though Mel Gibson's rant directed at his ex may be well beyond a gaffe and crossed the line to psychotic.
The threats were bad enough, but the hateful comments he made towards Blacks and Latinos was what really got myself and a lot of people. I've heard the suggestion that Mel go into rehab, I think what these people actually mean is therapy.
Why do I say this? To me rehab is for things like addictions, behaviors that have a physical component to them. For a chemical addiction, it's the chemicals themselves that provide a direct effect on the addict. For behavorial addictions; food,sex, gambling, etc, it's the effects that the behaviors have on the body.
Racism, to me, is something that is more learned. It can be taught by culture, see the American South before the Civil War, and during the age of Jim Crow, by family, or even the a government, South Africa under apartheit may be the best example of this, but Australia's policy towards the aboriginies could apply as well.
If Mel Gibson does decide, or is forced, to seek counseling for this hatred that seems to exist in him. After he decides where he learned this is why he chose to learn it. The choice to adopt a racist attitude, while it may be difficult to resist, is a choice that a person freely makes. The forces that drive this choice are many; a sense of superiority, or the idea that one is superior to "those people", feelings of anger or rage, this could be the case with Mel, or a notion that minorities get breaks or preferential treatment.
A potential new reason for racist ideas has come up as well, especially in America. The idea that the majority is losing it's hold on the political process. We have an African-American president who was elected with sizable support from younger people. This generation has seen lines of color become blurred like none before, and perhaps the older generation sees that notions of White superiority may be outdated.
Can Mel Gibson change? Does he want to may be a better question.