Race and racism are absurd concepts
Racism has become a vague, overly applied label utilizing a hugely contrived concept in an inexact, partisan way. The original and prevailing definition of racism was the belief that a race was inherently superior or inferior to another.
First off, to test such a concept one would have to define what is in fact superior and what task does one race do a thing, or perhaps an averaged slate of things, in a superior manner. As the definition of superior varies by the task, the time and the circumstance then a superior outcome would have to be the agreed upon and subsequently measured over the totality of time. Is a superior life the longest life or the life filled with the most pleasure? Is a so called race that produces but consumes much more of finite quantities of things superior to a so called race that produces less but consumes less of the same things? Is the ultimate goal of humanity just survival generation to generation or is it some kind of learning and behavioral evolution? We know that absent some divine intervention then at some point the cosmos will send a heavenly object careening into us or supernova our sun and if divine intervention is a possibility then our actions really won’t matter as far as ultimate survival of our species?
Race is a red herring, a distraction from culture.
Those questions and others like them render the idea of racism an illogical behavior. However racism is illogical out of the starting block because the concept of race is an artificial, illogical concept. Race is a red herring, an awkward construct of culture, phenotypes, self identification and circumstance.
There is no genetic basis for a belief that human intelligence, disposition, physicality or any other significant trait is related to skin color or any other human phenotype. I am a white male and I may well be closer genetically to Jesse Jackson than to George Bush. Even when studies show so called racial differences they usually have to qualify the studies with disclaimers admitting that the differences are not proven akin to the genetics but may well be cultural differences caused by environmental factors. The concept of, and resulting conflict between, so called human races and ethnicities is really an identification with and conflict between human cultures.
At one time, when various familial tribes of humans first encountered other such familial tribes, the phenotypes coincided with the cultures. This was not because of genetic imperatives but because of isolation and proximity. The phenotypical characteristics were a handy guide to differentiate between the tribes for practical but mostly nefarious reasons. Eventually, when the tribes mixed and the various cultures conflicted, the phenotypical characteristics should have, and often did, become less and less a way of distinguishing between behaviors, motives, and cultural beliefs. This should have been the case because the cultures would contend with each other and begin to forge a new cultural identity, crossover and compromise with some traits of each culture losing out to more efficacious traits from the other culture.
The Concept of Race is a Useful Tool of Special Interests.
This process was, however, thwarted, retarded by special interest on each side. Leaders in each phenotypical racial group reinforced the phenotypes as indicative of culture and behavior. This was often in order to maintain the status quo in which they held a leadership position. In essence the perpetuation of a racial myth, of an ethnic myth, created and maintained more leadership positions than were really necessary. Such perpetuation allowed those who best catered to the racial or ethnic myth undeserved status. In essence those leaders created and promoted a problem so that they could use the perceived direness of the problem to recommend themselves for leadership.
In the United States racial self identification has reached a sophisticated and volatile level. For example, black Americans, no matter the degree of closeness they may share with white Americans, are cajoled, shamed and otherwise pressured into self identification with a cobbled together ‘black culture’. Said black culture includes separateness, automatic victim hood, and an insatiable, impossible to satisfy, desire for some nebulous revenge for past wrongs against people that have long since died by people that have long since died. There is no genetic basis, no inherited strength or weakness for this identification, just a societal pressure to assume same.
White Americans often take advantage of this self identification in order to either bolster their leadership of a separate white America or to co-opt and subordinate the black American faction by solicitous fawning despite the consequences.
Race is a politically expedient tool
The American left has made an industry out of creating aggrieved factions in order to create a leadership role for itself; a leadership role, not based upon good ideas, positive applied energy, fidelity to truth or justice, strong self discipline, fairness or any other traditional leadership quality in effective groups. Instead that leadership is based upon inflamed, artificially created and sponsored differences, shrill catchphrase laden rhetoric and a deep unseen fear of their own lack of comparative value.
Elements of the American right have created a reactionary populist victimhood to counter the American left and allow the ascension of populist and boisterous leaders over the measured, sober, principled leadership that seems to just plod along.
Equality occurs after honest competition between cultural factors.
This same pattern with the same motives is evident worldwide and backwards into human history. Cultures and ideas must be allowed to freely but peacefully compete. Personal beliefs and strictures must not be either codified or suppressed. The only function of government must be the protection of life and property from violent trespass not the management of individual life and property. While self discipline and morality are vital to liberty they must be imposed from the family unit up. The ultimate sameness of human physical and psychological needs will surface and triumph given free reign from government suppression with the smaller range of human needs and desires being accommodated by individuals for that most powerful of all reasons, ¦they want to do so.
RACE AND THE GENETIC REVOLUTION: Science, Myth, and Culture. Edited by Sheldon Krimsky and Kathleen Sloan. Columbia University Press, 2011.