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Racism - Is the sun to blame?

Updated on September 9, 2009

Is There an Identifiable 'Cause' of Racism

 I believe the answer to this is 'Yes'. Furthermore, I believe there are multiple components to this 'reason', all of which can be tied to the sun.

My argument is not to justify racism in any way, or provide excuses to those who are racist. I believe there are factors that lead people towards racism just as i believe that a civilized society has no place for it. This article is a study into seemingly trivial factors that potentially contribute to a serious problem that continues to blight the global community.

How is the Sun involved?

Racism can have multiple components, but fear on one hand, and feelings of superiority on the other, are common factors. Both of these provide the link to the sun.

Regardless of current geographical locations, Caucasian people originated in the temperate zones away from the equator. Those whose heritage lies in the tropical zones developed the pigmentation that protects them from the sun but also creates the differences in physical appearance that define their race. There are obvious regional variations between African, Asian, Islander and Central American cultures but their differences from the northerners of the temperate zones is significantly more pronounced.

Fear of the Unknown

Humans naturally don't like surprises. We respond to unexpected events with the 'fight or flight' reaction that gets our heart racing. Fear of the dark, so common in children, has its roots in this response. Our survival instincts are there to protect us from predators.

My argument here is that the combined subconscious effects of recognizing someone is different from you (as all races automatically do) plus a primitive fear of the dark threatens white people when they see dark skin. This is an irrational response. No logic or conscious thought applies to this. I am also not implying that any previous interactions have any bearing on this - if past events are taken into account, fear of the white man would be a much more likely scenario. It is important to distinguish between a learned response and an automatic, unreasonable one.

This point is of course speculation on my part, and is not backed by any evidence. The sun is implicated here twice. Firstly for providing transient light in the form of night and day that leads to a fear of the dark in our formative years, and secondly for the harshness of its rays that resulted in equatorial races protecting themselves through pigmentation.

What is possible from wood alone
What is possible from wood alone

Superior? Me thinks not

 Another argument commonly used by racists is one of superiority. They site the great achievements of the white man through history as proof of the superior nature.

Again, I blame the sun for this notion, and again for two reasons.

Necessity is the mother of invention. I argue that the technological developments of the white man were not a result of their higher intelligence or of being a "better" race - They developed construction, architecture and similar skills because they had to. Shelter is a priority and a northern winter is harsh. Every civilization on earth developed what they needed to survive based on their requirements and the availability of resources.

As a result of the sun and seasons, the northern races constructed dwellings of stone which was abundant and an insulator, the tropical races used plentiful wood. There is less evidence today of historical wooden dwellings as wood has a limited lifespan in the humid tropics. This does not mean the equatorial races lacked skills and knowledge. The Mayans and Egyptians showed what was possible when stone was available in hot environments, who knows what skills existed in the Amazon or Congo years ago.

As survival is the ultimate test of any civilization, all current races have passed that test - they stand on an even footing. Genetics didn't shape the direction of a civilizations technological advancement. The weather did.

The sun is to "Blame"

 The sun made us different. It made our environments different. It made the way we live our lives different. It has always been of supreme importance to the earth as a whole.

As racism is the inability to deal with natural variation, I hereby "blame" the most amazing source of variation there is. The light from the sun, and the lack of it, that shapes everything and everyone on this planet.

 Life is not a competition, there does not have to be a winner.

You only lose if you send your time hating the same variation that makes our world such an interesting place.

The Racism Poll?

Who is to blame for racism

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The History of Racism in America


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    • jayb23 profile image

      jayb23 7 years ago from India

      Thats a v interesting observation mcbean. Racism is a fact of life like it or not.

    • mcbean profile image

      mcbean 8 years ago from A planet far, far away

      Obviously this hub is taking a concept to the extreme - at the expense of other valid points. I just find it interesting that something like the sun, that provides nealy all life, contributes to tension among humans.

    • prasetio30 profile image

      prasetio30 8 years ago from malang-indonesia

      Be wise, We have to think that we are the same. white, black, Asian,Afro is not a problem for me. we don't judge anyone or people. let's life in peace.thanks for choosing this topic.

    • Jaspal profile image

      Jaspal 8 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Haha ... nice hub and great reasoning!!

    • profile image

      Feline Prophet 8 years ago

      What an interesting theory! Unfortunately, racism exists even within the same geographical zone. In India for instance, we're all supposed to be 'brown' but some are browner than others and thus subjected to much disdain. The sun does have a lot to answer for!