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Is racism objective or subjective?

Is racism objective or subjective?

  • Both, leans toward objective.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Subjective, exclusively.

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    15

radcen

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Is racism objective or subjective?

I'm seeing this a lot, a public figure is accused of racism and/or racist attitudes and a defender of said public figure either says there is no proof or demands proof.

Is this a subject where proof, in the literal sense of the term, is even possible? If you are a person who has either demanded proof or claimed there is no proof, please explain exactly what type of proof would be acceptable.

On the flip side, just because you and like-minded people are firmly convinced a person is racist, your conviction alone does not make it so. What can you say or produce in an objective sense that the person your are talking about is indeed racist?

My opinion: It's kind of both... objective and subjective... but leans to the subjective in that it's also NOT "provable". It's not a scientific experiment. It's subject to the standards and mores of the day, and wouldn't even be the same from one society to another. It is my opinion that people who demand proof of racism are merely employing dishonest debate tactics because they're out of arguments.
 

cpwill

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I can tell this is a good question because I can't really choose a good answer.

I will give the Trumpkins this - when they laughingly claim that the accusation of Racism has lost all meaning due to overuse, they are correct.
 

Crovax

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Is racism objective or subjective?

I'm seeing this a lot, a public figure is accused of racism and/or racist attitudes and a defender of said public figure either says there is no proof or demands proof.

Is this a subject where proof, in the literal sense of the term, is even possible? If you are a person who has either demanded proof or claimed there is no proof, please explain exactly what type of proof would be acceptable.

On the flip side, just because you and like-minded people are firmly convinced a person is racist, your conviction alone does not make it so. What can you say or produce in an objective sense that the person your are talking about is indeed racist?

My opinion: It's kind of both... objective and subjective... but leans to the subjective in that it's also NOT "provable". It's not a scientific experiment. It's subject to the standards and mores of the day, and wouldn't even be the same from one society to another. It is my opinion that people who demand proof of racism are merely employing dishonest debate tactics because they're out of arguments.

I would say racism has an objective definition but it is certainly subjective to whether a certain statement or person fits that definition.
 

Gaius46

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I said Both but leaning towards being subjective mostly because I don't believe there's a definition of the word that everyone agrees on. On this board alone I've seen people use the term to mean everything from simple discrimination between individuals up to institutionalized, systemic discrimination by governments, the latter case generally being used as a way to not label black on white discrimination as racist.

I personally tend to go more with the latter definition and tend to think of anything lesser as discrimination. Discrimination is innate to all people and as such is not inherently wrong, though it can be when put into practice, while racism is always wrong.
 

Harry Guerrilla

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Is racism objective or subjective?

I'm seeing this a lot, a public figure is accused of racism and/or racist attitudes and a defender of said public figure either says there is no proof or demands proof.

Is this a subject where proof, in the literal sense of the term, is even possible? If you are a person who has either demanded proof or claimed there is no proof, please explain exactly what type of proof would be acceptable.

On the flip side, just because you and like-minded people are firmly convinced a person is racist, your conviction alone does not make it so. What can you say or produce in an objective sense that the person your are talking about is indeed racist?

My opinion: It's kind of both... objective and subjective... but leans to the subjective in that it's also NOT "provable". It's not a scientific experiment. It's subject to the standards and mores of the day, and wouldn't even be the same from one society to another. It is my opinion that people who demand proof of racism are merely employing dishonest debate tactics because they're out of arguments.

It's objective.
Racism is a belief and if someone reveals said belief, they are a racist.

Is spotting a racist always that simple, no.
That doesn't make it not objective.

Problem now is that morlocks have access to the internet, have weaponized both it and many words.
Making said words lose all meaning.
Call me a racist, I don't care anymore.
 

radcen

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I can tell this is a good question because I can't really choose a good answer.

I will give the Trumpkins this - when they laughingly claim that the accusation of Racism has lost all meaning due to overuse, they are correct.
I do agree that "racist/racism", like "abuse" and many other terms, is overused. To the point that they have lost some or all of their original meaning.
 

radcen

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I would say racism has an objective definition but it is certainly subjective to whether a certain statement or person fits that definition.
I think that's a fair assessment. I wouldn't say the definition is absolutely objective, but it could lean that way, with some nuances, maybe.

Then again, maybe the nuances are in the application, and it is the application that is subjective.

Just thinking out loud.
 

Bodhisattva

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Objective almost solely... something is either racist or it is not. What the listener "thinks or feels" is irrelevant.
 

SocialD

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Is racism objective or subjective?

I'm seeing this a lot, a public figure is accused of racism and/or racist attitudes and a defender of said public figure either says there is no proof or demands proof.

Is this a subject where proof, in the literal sense of the term, is even possible? If you are a person who has either demanded proof or claimed there is no proof, please explain exactly what type of proof would be acceptable.

On the flip side, just because you and like-minded people are firmly convinced a person is racist, your conviction alone does not make it so. What can you say or produce in an objective sense that the person your are talking about is indeed racist?

My opinion: It's kind of both... objective and subjective... but leans to the subjective in that it's also NOT "provable". It's not a scientific experiment. It's subject to the standards and mores of the day, and wouldn't even be the same from one society to another. It is my opinion that people who demand proof of racism are merely employing dishonest debate tactics because they're out of arguments.

Definitely subjective.
 

d0gbreath

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Objective almost solely... something is either racist or it is not. What the listener "thinks or feels" is irrelevant.

Subjective; as the subject feels when it is directed at them. How they think and feel is the relevance. Objective, would be the crowd after it's in the news, irrelevant.
 

Bodhisattva

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Subjective; as the subject feels when it is directed at them. How they think and feel is the relevance. Objective, would be the crowd after it's in the news, irrelevant.

It doesn't matter how the person feels... that is the problem with "racism" these days. If I say "hey look at that black guy" and people feel that is racism... it is not racism.
 

d0gbreath

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It doesn't matter how the person feels... that is the problem with "racism" these days. If I say "hey look at that black guy" and people feel that is racism... it is not racism.

What matters is how that black guy feels about some cracka calling him a black guy. Try: "look at that man".
 

maquiscat

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Is racism objective or subjective?

I'm seeing this a lot, a public figure is accused of racism and/or racist attitudes and a defender of said public figure either says there is no proof or demands proof.

Is this a subject where proof, in the literal sense of the term, is even possible? If you are a person who has either demanded proof or claimed there is no proof, please explain exactly what type of proof would be acceptable.

On the flip side, just because you and like-minded people are firmly convinced a person is racist, your conviction alone does not make it so. What can you say or produce in an objective sense that the person your are talking about is indeed racist?

My opinion: It's kind of both... objective and subjective... but leans to the subjective in that it's also NOT "provable". It's not a scientific experiment. It's subject to the standards and mores of the day, and wouldn't even be the same from one society to another. It is my opinion that people who demand proof of racism are merely employing dishonest debate tactics because they're out of arguments.

I can't say that any of you options fit well. Part of it comes from the fact that many people misuse the word "racist" nowadays. Many times "bigot" is the more proper term. To be a racist, one must believe that either their race is superior to all others, or that a given race is inferior to all others. Now while the beliefs behind racism are definitely subjective, whether or not someone is being racist could be objective. Many people will show their racism openly, explicitly stating an inferior/superior reasoning. But in the same vein, some people can subjective assign the label of racist, for actions they perceive hold a superior/inferior basis, even if the person engaging in the action does not hold that type of belief.
 

Bodhisattva

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What matters is how that black guy feels about some cracka calling him a black guy. Try: "look at that man".

Sure it matters how he feels but not with regards to making that statement racist or not.

The statement is racist or not independent of a persons feelings. It is racist or not based on the statement itself.
 

AGENT J

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Is racism objective or subjective?

I'm seeing this a lot, a public figure is accused of racism and/or racist attitudes and a defender of said public figure either says there is no proof or demands proof.

Is this a subject where proof, in the literal sense of the term, is even possible? If you are a person who has either demanded proof or claimed there is no proof, please explain exactly what type of proof would be acceptable.

On the flip side, just because you and like-minded people are firmly convinced a person is racist, your conviction alone does not make it so. What can you say or produce in an objective sense that the person your are talking about is indeed racist?

My opinion: It's kind of both... objective and subjective... but leans to the subjective in that it's also NOT "provable". It's not a scientific experiment. It's subject to the standards and mores of the day, and wouldn't even be the same from one society to another. It is my opinion that people who demand proof of racism are merely employing dishonest debate tactics because they're out of arguments.

Great question but the answer is its 100% objective by definition.

the issue is when theres not enough evidence to determine if it is or not people apply it subjectively . . .but that doesnt change the definition that just shows theres varying opinion of the evidence on hand.

a secondary factor is also a single act or statment that could fit the defintion of a racist one DOES NOT in fact make the person a racist.

For example my best friend who is white (im mixed) I know everything about him, he has dated black girls and he has me for his best friend. I was in best man at his wedding and he cried like a little girl when my dad died who was also very important to him.

If he was beaten up and robbed in an alley by guys who happen to be black and in that moment as the guys ran away he laid there, bloody, broken ribs, bleeding and moneless and he yelled at them and said F YOU N words......

nothing about that would make me think HE is racists . .
wrong? i guess
a racist slur? absolutely
makes him a factual racists? nope

Id equate that to a girl kissing another girl in college, that one act doesnt magically make her a homosexual.
 

d0gbreath

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Sure it matters how he feels but not with regards to making that statement racist or not.

The statement is racist or not independent of a persons feelings. It is racist or not based on the statement itself.

Kewl avy!

I think it's about using a descriptive word before the noun, when it's not needed. "Hey look at that white guy" doesn't get as much use.
 

AGENT J

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Kewl avy!

I think it's about using a descriptive word before the noun, when it's not needed. "Hey look at that white guy" doesn't get as much use.

sure it does, logically he gets more use when the majority are black people thats the difference.

Ive certainly been watching sports and used "white guy" . . .or any other situation where the logical instant descriptor makes sense. just like woman or red head etc etc
 

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I don't understand the difficulty. This isn't rocket science.
Racism
noun
the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.
•prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior.
"a program to combat racism"
synonyms: racial discrimination, racialism, racial prejudice, xenophobia, chauvinism, bigotry, casteism
"Aborigines are the main victims of racism in Australia"

Either discrimination/antagonism based on racial characteristics happens or it doesn't. There is no "opinion" only the definition of the word.
A remark is either discriminatory against racial characteristics/eludes to such discrimination or it isn't/doesn't. I don't see why this is so difficult.
I could give a rat's left testes as to what "society" thinks racism is. When did we set aside what things are, literally, and trade them out for what a popular voice "says" it is or might be?
 

radcen

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I don't understand the difficulty. This isn't rocket science.
Racism
noun
the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.
•prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior.
"a program to combat racism"
synonyms: racial discrimination, racialism, racial prejudice, xenophobia, chauvinism, bigotry, casteism
"Aborigines are the main victims of racism in Australia"

Either discrimination/antagonism based on racial characteristics happens or it doesn't. There is no "opinion" only the definition of the word.
A remark is either discriminatory against racial characteristics/eludes to such discrimination or it isn't/doesn't. I don't see why this is so difficult.
I could give a rat's left testes as to what "society" thinks racism is. When did we set aside what things are, literally, and trade them out for what a popular voice "says" it is or might be?
Ok, now apply it with that definitive science-like certainty. Apply it in such a way that everyone will agree which instances are and which ones are not.
 

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Racism is exclusively objective. Someone or something is either racist or not. The word has a specific definition, therefore, a defined criteria exists for determining whether or not someone or something is racist. If those criteria are not met, then said thing/person is not racist. If those criteria are met, then said thing/person is racist.
 

Bodhisattva

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Kewl avy!

I think it's about using a descriptive word before the noun, when it's not needed. "Hey look at that white guy" doesn't get as much use.

Because 14% of the people are black. 70% something percent are white. When describing white people we say what they are wearing, or if they are blond, etc. in general.
 

Bodhisattva

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sure it does, logically he gets more use when the majority are black people thats the difference.

Ive certainly been watching sports and used "white guy" . . .or any other situation where the logical instant descriptor makes sense. just like woman or red head etc etc

Exactly... was watching the women NCAA 800m race this morning and when I said that girl went to Oregon State and the uniform was tough to read (for my daughter) she said ,"which on?", and I responded "the white girl" because she was the only white runner.
 

Grand Mal

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Objective almost solely... something is either racist or it is not. What the listener "thinks or feels" is irrelevant.

D'accord.
I don't know why this is an issue. Merriam-Webster (or OED if you prefer) is online. If only literate people were involved we'd all be on the same page but since others learned to say 'redefined' a lot of waters have been muddied.
 
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