Racism: What's that?

Submitted by hadrian on Thu, 07/07/2016 - 21:58


It happened, again. Yet again, a man has been killed by the cops. This time the crime was reported and we can't dance around one simple fact: it was murder. At the time of writing there have been, in the United States alone, 561 extra-judicial murders by these cowardly mercenaries. Cowards? Yes, most definitely. There is no bravery in shooting a man already under your knee and barely able to move. In the meantime many white people are making a fuss about #BlackLivesMatter not being #AllLivesMatter. Although the absolute amount of white people murdered by the police, in the United States, is higher than the amount of killed black people, the amount of people per million inhabitants shows that black people are more than twice as likely to be murdered. Only the Native American population has, this year, seen a higher amount of murdered people per million inhabitants. How long is this going to continue? Why does this keep happening?

Society is Racist

We've grown used to the corporate media never engendering a proper discussion about what racism is and how it works. They can't avoid the problem any more, a small victory for the #BlackLivesMatter movement - a victory that more than legitimizes that movement. In the Netherlands, racism also continues to be a common point of discussion. But what exactly is racism? There's two vantage points that exist simultaneously: structural discrimination and stereotyping.

Structural Discrimination

Racisme is a system of structural discrimination which, because of the socio-economic context, has oppressive effects. This socio-economic context makes it necessary for us to beg for an income - usually this means getting a 'job.' If you don't get that job, it's very likely your income isn't enough to pay all the bills. In the Netherlands there is a small stipend provided by the state but everyone who has to survive on this pittance knows it's not enough. Lack of money also means a constant source of stress. With a system of structural discrimination we see that certain groups become marginalized. For example, Moroccan-Dutch people are known to be twice as likely, according to the Central Bureau for Statistics, to be structurally unemployed compared to white people. This isn't a choice; the only ones who can choose not to do anything useful for society are the rich and there are remarkably few rich Moroccan-Dutch people.