Friday, March 20, 2015

Racism, Racial Phobia Not The Same Thing; One Is Curable

Dear Tazi:

I think I might be racist, but I am not sure. I feel incredibly uncomfortable around black people. I think this is because whenever I turn on the news and see that some violent crime has been committed, the criminal is a black person. I realize that people of other races commit crimes, too, but I feel like if I am going to be a victim of crime it will most likely be committed by a black person. Do these feelings make me racist?


Dear Racist:

It should bring you comfort to know that almost every serial killer in American history has been white. Ditto with every homegrown terrorist - including assassins and potential assassins - every guy that has ever shot up a school, mall, or movie theater.  Child molesters are more likely to be white men than men of any other race (or women in general), and studies have shown that rapists almost exclusively (over 75% of the time) rape women of their own race. A study by SUNY - Buffalo reports that 92% of white, working-class women have experienced serious domestic violence in the home, as opposed to only 62% of black working-class women (and no, black men are not breaking in and beating on white women!).  Do these statistics help to alleviate your misguided fear that black people are more prone to violence than any other racial group? In fact, it appears that white people have a lock on crazy!

I do not think your irrational fear of African-Americans makes you a racist, per se, since racism springs from feelings of hatred of other races, along with the belief that the white race is superior to all others. I do think that your phobia could morph into full-fledged racism if you do not seek counseling for it. Furthermore, I am concerned about your statement that the only crimes you see reported are committed by black people. Is this your experience? Are you watching a biased news station? Or are these the claims of a racist close to you that has you believing that the overwhelming majority of crimes are committed by black people? A professional counselor could help you dig into the roots of your fear and uproot them once and for all, allowing you to get to know people for who they are - regardless of skin color - and not what you have been taught to believe they are.


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

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