Thursday, May 14

"I'm not a racist, but..."

Sometimes, for fun, I go on Facebook and actively seek and report all racist posts on right-wing discussion groups and forums for fun. I think it's important to know your enemy and, judging by the standard of the posts I have reported, the enemy is ill-informed and illiterate. I'm not naive about the fact that I am actually making very little difference at all, but I do believe that every little helps, and it can't hurt to get a few racists removed from social networking sites every now and then, can it?

The one phrase that predominates on these boards is the title of this post. Surely it's a known cliche by now? I'd have to actually join these groups to challenge these people, but I do like to have imaginary conversations with them in my head.

I'm not a racist but...

No... stop right there. The fact that you have to prefix that sentence with that statement means that you ARE about to say something dubious about people from a different culture to your own.

No, I'm not. I'm not a racist. But...

NO. You ARE a racist, actually. Why else would you feel the need to add that disclaimer before expressing your view?

You won't let me finish. Stop taking away my right to free speech!

Okay. Go on then. Show me how you're NOT a racist.

I'm not a racist, but I would be nervous getting on a tube train with a man holding a copy of the Qur'an.

See? I know I can't really win against these folks. But I do try.

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