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Study on Racism is Racist

Below you will find the full article that was published on MSNBC in fear that it might become unavailable because of its own blatant form racism. My comments will come after the article.


Racism: What we say doesn’t match what we do

Surprising study found college students indifferent to overtly racist act

updated 3:44 p.m. ET, Thurs., Jan. 8, 2009
WASHINGTON – Think you wouldn’t tolerate a racist act? Think again, says a surprising experiment that exposed some college students to one and found indifference at best.

Here’s the scene: Researchers in Toronto recruited 120 non-black York University students for what purported to be a psychology study.

A participant was directed to a room where two actors posing as fellow participants — one black, one white — waited. The black person said he needed to retrieve a cell phone and left, gently bumping the white person’s leg on the way out. The white actor then did one of three things: Nothing. Said, “I hate when black people do that.” Or used the N-word.

Then a researcher entered and said the “psychology study” was starting and that the student should pick one of the two others as a partner for the testing.

Half the participants just read about that scene, and half actually experienced it.

Those asked to predict their reaction to either comment said they’d be highly upset and wouldn’t choose the white actor as their partner.

Not bothered by racism?
Yet students who actually experienced the event didn’t seem bothered by it — and nearly two-thirds chose the white actor as a partner, the researchers report Friday in the journal Science.

“It’s like these nasty racist comments aren’t having an effect,” said York University psychology professor Kerry Kawakami, the lead author.

“It’s important to remind people that just because a black man has been elected as president doesn’t mean racism is no longer a problem or issue in the States,” she added.

The study can’t say why people reacted that way, although the researchers speculate that unconscious bias is at work. They have new experiments under way to see if maybe these witnesses suppress that they’re upset to avoid confrontation.

“The failure of people to confront or do anything about racist comments is pretty widespread in the real world,” said Indiana University psychologist Eliot R. Smith, who co-wrote a review of the experiment. “People may feel uncomfortable if someone makes a remark like this, but it’s rare they will actually confront them.”


Articles like this bug the bejesus out of me. First it is racist against white people or PC European-Americans. The study’s very nature excludes the testing of blacks through similar means. Why is that? Simply put it conspicuously is stating that ONLY white people can be racist. We also do not know exactly how the test was conducted. One cannot deny that there is a human element here that may not have been considered. These include but are not limited to: people that have different backgrounds, beliefs, social status, and places that they came from. These are all variables that would be different if say a person from the country saw the first scenario as apposed to the last. We do not have that information and if this information was not accounted for in the study it is not very scientific. It could be that the test was tainted by the actors in a way that the people conducting the study do not realize. Do not forget that the actors could have influenced the outcome made by the observer’s by making the hit in the last scenario look more on purpose or the actor being hit could have changed the inflection and character of his voice that made his statements more or less harsh. The bottom line is that there are too many variables that could have affected this outcome including the environment inside the observer’s room, like heat, humidity, light, lack of heat. All in this entire test from our perspective and the information that the article gave us is far from scientific and even further from being conclusive.

Truly it has been my experience that blacks in general are more prejudice/racist than whites. One aspect of this is again that the article is an eloquent example. The non-black world is so afraid of a word that no one will say it or put it in print. It is just a word when being used in context, nothing more nothing less. There is no acceptable reason to me to type “the N-word” instead of “nigger” when not being used as an epithet.

People are to hyper-sensitive to the word. I remember an AP article in our paper about a person of authority using the word “niggardly” regarding their budget crisis and what action needs to be taken. The white man who used the word resigned because two people he was speaking to one black male and one white male, the white male complained to his superiors and made a large issue out of the mans proper use of the word.

There is no other word in the English language that has been elevated to this level. Worse is the fact that among blacks the word nigger is somewhat to wholly endearing.

As far as prejudice the black community would be more than scornful if a white person used the word nigger while at the same time they feel free to use cracker (from whip-cracker), honkey, white bread, wonder bread, cracker jack, all used very condescendingly. Words used by whites and blacks include a nd are not limited to, red neck, trailer trash, white trash, peckerwood, Buckra (not commonly used in the US it means demon), ofay, hick, bumpkin, honky, yokel, good ol’ boy, shitkicker, bubba, gringo, hillbilly, paleface, vanilla, peckerwood, toehead, hunky, blue-eyed devil, Miss Anne, Mister Charlie, greyboy, pinktoe, snowflake, saltine, and whitey. There are more but if these do not get the point across nothing will.

Now, only a couple of these are not used by blacks but it does show that there are many “white epithets’.” People argue that they are not as wrong as nigger, I say peshaw! The only reason that these words may not have the same sting to some is that whites have been raised to believe that only they can be racist and these words do not compare to nigger and the white population was also raised with the expresion “sticks and stones.” The black community should do the same and decide that the word nigger is just not going to bother them anymore. I doubt this will happen because I really believe that many in the black community enjoy this edge in society where the white community in essence MUST treat them with higher regard in public than blacks do of whites. People have been verbally warned, suspended, and fired from their jobs for using the word. Many people have been publicly deposed. I defy anyone to find me a handful black people who have had to suffer any of these things because they used the word cracker. Even Howard Cosell’s innocent use of the word “monkey” got him to leave that sports casting job. The irony is that he was referring to a black player Alvin Garrett from the “Redskins.” Think about it.

Enough is enough. I am no longer afraid of the word nigger, nor have I been for some time. No word spoken should ever spark a beating, stabbing, shooting, murder, or a group attack on one person. This can never be justified.

Trash me all you want over this subject because I will know the more volatile your posts, the more you know I am right.



8 Responses to “Study on Racism is Racist”

  1. I think you are thinking like sukrat, but I think you should cover the other side of the topic in the post too…

  2. Hey Bernie,

    Perhaps the only way to even the playing field is for “European-Americans” to be brutally enslaved for centuries, then to be oppressed, lynched, ghettoized, treated like animals, etc., simply because you are white and others don’t think you deserve the right to be treated like a human or to have a house or job, etc., etc. That word was a key tool used to both intimidate and oppress. Then perhaps it might make a little more sense as to why some might be a little touchy about the way they have been treated, and still are, because they look different.

    Besides, both whites and blacks are victims of those who manipulate both to hate each other so we waste time with these brain-dead conflicts while those in Rome and their shadowy cohorts laugh at how stupid the deceived dupes are that keep focusing on each other instead of the true source of the problems. Everyone is now a proxy-slave to money, but some don’t realize it and think that they are somehow special, when in fact, the Vatican stays safe and rich while all struggle. Turn your attention towards those who put everyone into this deceptive trap, because whether white, black, brown, or other, we have all been secretly enslaved through a great deception. Put that in your pipe… Context is everything…

    Peace and Wisdom…

  3. Seven,

    Now you sound like an uninformed bleeding heart. First NO ONE alive today in this country can say they were slaves for hundreds of years. In fact no one lives for hundreds of years so that entire argument is moot. I would like to point out that we did not start the slave trade, in fact typically in Africa tribe vs. tribe they would enslave them or assimilate them and the black community has to acknowledge that and point the finger first at themselves then SOME that live here.

    I take strong objection having the finger pointed at me because I am only second generation American, my family and I had NOTHING to do with slavery. Mmmm that is good tobacco.

    Seven, so is there a time limit on this so called slavery issue, I mean since none of these people that are complaining were ever slaves, what exactly is the complaint? I am Catholic/Christian and we were oppressed, lynched, ghettoized, treated like animals, others don’t think you deserve the right to be treated like a human or to have a house or job enslaved and fed to the lions and tigers so I am just a tad sensitive too and we look alike to boot. That tobacco keeps tasting better.

    There are many words used by others towards European Americans that are just as wrong.
    I like how you skirted my issue though, it is just a word, no one alive today has personally experienced slavery for hundreds of years (nor has anyone), and they have no right at this point in history to leach off of that fact anymore. Additionally you have not stated whether or not it is OK for someone to be beaten, killed, knifed, gang attacked etc. for using the word nigger. Furthermore how wrong can it be if blacks themselves use it endearingly? Perhaps then they should set the example.

    As far as the jobs go I have not compassion there either because I have been denied jobs because I am white or male after tying for first on several exams and being passed over for those were 1,500 or more on the test scores. I am not to be held accountable for the “crimes” of my father or for my family that were not here but I was. I could have been retired by now and spending my time with my children. Who is going to give me reparations for this? Now I hope you understand why I am sensitive about these areas.

    Also the study does not address racism with the black community and it is only fair to test them in the same way to see if this is a universal problem and not just a white problem.

    Racism is perpetrated by every race but it seems that only the white populous are blamed. I do not want to here that we are the worst offenders either because that is simply not true.


  4. The article states: “It’s like these nasty racist comments aren’t having an effect,” said York University psychology professor Kerry Kawakami, the lead author. “It’s important to remind people that just because a black man has been elected as president doesn’t mean racism is no longer a problem or issue in the States,” she added.

    So, Kawakami calls someone who was born to a white woman and raised by a white mother and white grandparents “a black man.” In my opinion, referring to someone who is widely known to have a white mother and a black father “a black man” puts her in the same category she’s accusing others of being in.

    (If I were to state that I identify with the Ukrainian side of my family more so than the Scottish side of my family, that doesn’t negate the fact that my mother is of Scottish heritage and, therefore, so am I.)

  5. By the way, here’s an interesting unintentional study that happened to me just last week: I was in Kinko’s copy center and was leaving the store and walking past the register when I saw a young man at the cash register looking through the papers he’d just copied and not paying attention to the fact that his wallet was on the counter five feet away. I stopped momentarily and asked if that was his wallet, and he said that it was. I then said something like, “You might want to grab it instead of leaving it sitting out there in the open.” He thanked me, and I kept walking.

    When I was just getting to my car, a lady inside the store yelled out at me, “That was rude! That was rude! I was not going to steal his wallet!”

    I went back in and talked to her and told her that she was being “silly.” That’s the only word I could really think of to say at the time. I then explained that I had not even seen her at the time I noticed the wallet sitting there and also mentioned that my cell phone had been stolen in a very similar circumstance in a copy center when I hadn’t been paying close enough attention.

    She seemed to understand that she had wrongfully accused me of accusing her and then said, “Okay, then.”

    At that point, I got a little irritated because I felt I was due an apology for being yelled at and wrongly accused of something, and so I sarcastically told her that her apology was accepted.

    * Part of me was irritated for being accused of something for which there was no basis in fact.

    * Part of me felt bad for the woman in that she assumed I would think she was a thief. I don’t know this for sure but am speculating that she felt I was assuming she was a thief because she was black.

    * Part of me was irritated when I tried to explain the situation and make ammends after being wrongly accused, and she didn’t apologize.

  6. Patty,

    That is a damn shame. I have had people pull the race card with me and nothing could be further from the truth. Do not get me wrong all of us harbor some prejudices (as much as the media, mixed company, and blacks ignore or deny that this is true), it is human nature, but more importantly is what we do with them and how we handle different situations. I typically always give everyone a chance but once you have abused my trust I am not coming back for seconds. As cliché as it sounds I have black friends and my daughter is best friends wit a black girl (my son has a best friend who is black and so does my youngest daughter) not that this is important because my story is with my oldest girls best friend. Her father wants nothing to to with her, she is a great kid, and she brought up in conversation with my daughter that unlike my daughter who has someone to walk her down the isle she does not have a father to do this for her. My daughter relayed the story to me and I said that I would to this for her. I also told my daughter that I would be the father in every respect, that being the thing that this girl did not realize was part of the ceremony that when the dad gives away the daughter he whispers to the groom that he best better take care of his daughter or he will have the dad to answer to . . .

    She was so excited that she had to call me and ask me if I was serious. I am serious as a heart attack.


  7. Very great post! Honestly.

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