Scene: A meeting. A table. Six professionals who form a team in a workplace are having their fortnightly meeting
A discussion about shopping is happening. It's not that interesting
Workmate: I'm not racist but I hate the....
As soon as the words i am not a racist but passes your lips then you have raised the flag, put on the t-shirt, learnt the team song and are marching to the beat of the racist drum roll. You may see yourself as okay because there only one type of people you like "Because they are pushy" but you are not.
It is not okay Never. Ever. Your snide categorization and generalization of a group of people is shortsighted, dimwitted and ultimately racist.
And there is no sliding scale to being a racist. You are either one or you are not.
Casual , off handed comments and people who are not racist but hate the... need to be challenged and confronted as it happens. Nearly 20 years ago when the above script was played out I said nothing, dumbstruck by the dumbfuck. I should have said something . I play it out in my head again and again with the right retort ranging from "wow you are really a dipshit" to a long expletive filled tirade. But I said nothing
This simple, almost throwaway racism, is around us constantly. Be it comments like this, or nicknames for groups of people or generalizations about their behavior we make it allowable and acceptable to be this way. However small and throwaway it is, it should be confronted. In this case I said nothing. I should have.
So should you.