Why Is There Racism Who Started It In The First Place
Why is there racism?
© 2008 VVeasey Publishing
Who started it?
What is the point of racism?
What’s underneath it all?"
Well those questions, as some of you are aware, have complex answers.
Like an Octopus with a thousand tentacles!
But let’s attempt to answer them anyway.
Why are they’re racist attitudes in the first place?
Or to put it another way, what drove white European Christians to view themselves as superior to non-whites and to go around the world conquering or enslaving them for their own profit and benefit?
I don't know why they did that!
But I'm damned good at speculating!
When the Romans first invaded Northern Europe during 1st century BC, they encountered Germanic tribes wearing animal skins and living in thatched huts.
The Romans wore fine clothes lived in elaborate stone building, lived by written laws and legal codes and had a high degree of civilization (aqueducts, indoor baths, etc)
They looked on the animal skin wearing, thatched hut living Germanic tribes, as savages. Sound familiar.
(That’s the how the Europeans who first invaded, I mean “discovered” America viewed the Indians when they first encountered them)
But in this instance you have whites looking down on other whites as inferior!
The Germanic tribes were spread across England and most of Northern Europe.
Northern European history and culture was so affected by Roman culture that, around the 11th century AD, the pope of that period and Charlemagne created a Second “Roman Empire,” The Holy Roman Empire, ruled by the once envious “savage” tribes.
Today England has a parliament and the United States a Congress because they are both patterned after the Roman judicial system created by the cultural descendants of these “savage” tribes.
To make a long story short, Roman civilization was the dominant culture and power in that region and the known world for about a thousand years.
But as time went on the Roman ruling class became indulgent, corrupt and lazy until the wild war waging "savage”, Germanic tribes became powerful enough to over throw what was left of the “Glory” of Rome".
My Psychologically Interesting Speculations
Now here's where my speculations get psychologically interesting (at least to me)
As a result of being treated as inferior by the Romans for hundreds of years, when these “savages” finally did over throw Rome, they over compensated for the inferiority complex they had developed by putting in its place a superiority complex that masked their feelings of cultural inferiority.
It's like someone having murderous envy toward another they secretly admire, finally getting the chance to knock them off and take their place.
These “savage” tribes started feeling really good about themselves, like they were the Big Dogs!
And they were the Big Dogs!
Hadn’t they just knocked off the superior culture of the once mighty Roman Empire?
They started seeing themselves as superior and but still had the need to keep that inferiority complex covered up!
So it was easy for them to act-out their distain without guilt, on those ethnic groups they viewed as savage or inferior to them (as the Romans previously viewed them), because they saw the savagery and inferiority as coming from those groups, not from themselves.
White Anglo-Saxon Protestants in the U.S. inherited this cultural legacy of White Supremacy from the descendants of those “savage” tribes who immigrated to North America before the founding of the United States.
Further Speculations On Why There Are Racist Attitudes
Some whites grow up in racist home and social environments.
They have been "brainwashed" with racist propaganda throughout their whole early Social development as kids.
I've seen documentaries on the Klan, Neo-Nazis and other racist groups that show parents with their 3, 4, or 5 year olds at these rallies dressed in Klan robes, Neo-Nazi uniforms or other racist attire. They’re chanting racist slogans and beaming with pride and enthusiastic approval of their children for doing the same thing.
So these are some of the ways racist attitudes are passed on from generation to generation and “why they’re there in the first place” for these kids.
What's The Point Of Racism
What's the point of racism?
What's underneath it?
What’s “underneath” racism is the ideology of White Supremacy.
Certain white European philosophers perpetuated the theory, as a result of Darwin's theory of evolution, for some of the reasons I gave above and for others to complex to go into in this article.
That white people (especially white men because they dominated white society) were the pinnacle of the evolution of the human species and therefore racially superior and more privileged than all other races.
That philosophy was behind the exploitation of Africans for free slave labor and the economic gain of white businessmen during the era of the slave trade.
Africans were seen as subhuman in the evolutionary scale and therefore they weren't really enslaving or exploiting humans but something more like cattle or other beasts of burden.
When the United States Constitution was created, the enslaved Africans were referred to indirectly as only 3/5th of a person to limit the voting power of the slaves states, who because of the importation of slaves, had a larger population and therefore more voting power, than the non-slave states.
But this still allowed the slave states to maintain their investments in the very profitable slave trade.
Most of the so-called "founding fathers" if not all of them, including Jefferson and Washington were rich slave-owners. The first twelve American presidents owned slaves, some of them while they were in office.
Obviously, the Constitution was created to protect the economic rights of the “founding fathers” not the enslaved African Americans, American Indians, or any other non-white group for that matter.
As a matter of fact, in the early days of the United States, the only people classified as white were, white Anglo-Saxon protestants (WASP) who were English or descended from the English.
Italians, Jews and others weren't looked upon as white until well after the slave trade was in full bloom.
The white supremacist philosophy, the profitable slave trade and economic gain was main cause of the civil war.
The southern states, who imported most of the slave labor, whole economy was based on free slave labor and lots of people were getting rich or doing very well as a result of it.
So they weren't too happy when certain conscientious whites (like Lincoln), who may have thought whites were racially superior to blacks, but didn't believe it was right to enslaved their fellow man, wanted to end the profitable importation of slave labor.
So rather than have that occur, the political leaders of the slave states decided that they would no longer be part of the United States.
Lincoln and other leaders said, “You can't break up the Union of the United States!”
The slave states leaders said “Oh yes we can!”
And that's how in a simplified way the Civil War got started.
Some people say the Civil War wasn't about slavery, but directly and indirectly, obviously it was
Hitler was a white supremacist.
He called the superior whites, Aryans.
He learned a lot of his ideas about racial superiority from the racist science and philosophy of the slave trade and Jim Crow practices of the United States (research this one for yourselves)
A Less Familiar Source Of Racism
Another less familiar source of racism is the Old Testament idea of the "Chosen People of God" who are more special to God than all other people!
And of course through much intellectual rationalizing by racist Judeo-Christian intellectuals God’s “Chosen People” were deem to be white.
They convinced themselves and others that it was Ok to deprive Africans of their rights because they enjoyed a special privilege from God, a “manifest destiny”, to dominate Africans and other non-white groups because they were “God's Chosen” people.
But the underlying core of racism is that White Supremacists don’t want Blacks or other groups they view as inferior, contaminating their “superior” gene pool with their “tainted” blood.
And white racist men jealously defend their sexual dominance over white women.
These two issues have sparked the most vehement white violence and hatred toward Black men in the long history of racial violence in this country.
It made white racist men feel sexually inadequate and inferior and an affront to their sexual dominance and pride if "their" white women preferred what they saw as subhuman, genetically inferior black men to themselves.
They become enraged with hate filled, envy and jealousy toward Black men.
Thus the formation of 'the Knights of the Ku Klux Klan" as as “Chivalric” order to protect the virtue of "the flower of the white race" (white women) from all those degenerate black men whose only desire was to deflower them (Rape them).
thus the plethora of lynchings of Black men during the late 18 and early 1900s in the United States (mainly in the southern states).
You can see how over time this hate-filled jealousy would continue to reinforce its self and how it would be attractive to other white men, who wanted to see themselves as this “Chivalrous order of knights” valiantly protecting, "The flower of the white race” from the threat of de-flowerment by “black beasts”. And the even greater threat of the "tainting" of their family’s gene pool with the blood of these genetically inferior "beasts of burden or predators".
These feelings, spurred them with a religious zeal, on a religious crusade, carrying out the most extreme violence against black men and any white women, who dared to have sex or become romantically involved with them.
(But it was ok if white men had sex with Black women!)
The flaming cross of the Klan is a “Christian” cross! They see themselves as Christians and Jesus as their Aryan savior.
A Psychological View Of Racism
From a psychological view, the point of racism is to make those groups who hold this view, feel they are superior, better and more privileged than all other ethnic groups.
It's kind of like one little kid saying to another kid, that my dad is better than your dad!
Sometimes , those who latch on to racist ideas have unfulfilled needs for self-esteem, or some other lack that they're unconsciously attempting to fill.
Or it's just racial, brainwashing, plain and simple, or a combination of brainwashing and other factors.
There are usually complex factors involved in the genesis of any problem rather than just one, especially a problem like this one.
That, in a very simplified way is “why there are racist attitudes in the first place”
I leave some questions for you to ponder and find the answers to.
I’m just stirring up the stew for you.
I've studied, pondered and researched this topic for about 20-30 years because, I wanted to know why racism and racial hatred in this country keeps rearing its ugly head, generation after generation and wanted to find out what that was all about.
And what makes it so resilient.
That’s my take on the subject.
Now it’s your turn to take an honest, truthful look at the question, why is there racism and who started it in the first place and how can we get rid of
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© 2012 VC L Veasey