A "Black Swan Event" is when the unexpected occurs, causing a huge mindshift and change in how the world works. People never imagined that Black Swans existed, until the discovery of the first Black Swan... (as per book "The Black Swan", by Nassim Nicholas Taleb, 2007, that sold over 3 million copies)

Is a perception change the next Black Swan Event? Consider that by changing perception we might change the world. Look at everyday things from different angles. Find beauty in the unexpected...
Change our thinking, change our actions, change our world!

See that all people are part of God's puzzle and have something to give. Black swans do exist. The ugly duckling was actually a swan who needed to discover himself and where he fitted and be who he was meant to be. To the last, the lost and the least, you are beautiful as you are.
May all who visit this page feel God's touch and experience His blessing...

Sunday, 24 February 2013

Is There Such a Thing as Reverse Racism?

I took part in a workshop this weekend and we were discussing societal level concepts. The term racism was mentioned, and the example given was South Africa during apartheid. I then mentioned that racism still exists in South Africa today, but that the status quo is changing and white people are now often the target of discrimination. As examples, a couple of well-known companies advertised that no whites should apply for jobs, and white people are being murdered at an alarming rate, especially farmers. Ah, the lecturer, exclaimed, this is reverse racism!

Now I think to myself, hmm, reverse racism. Why call this phenomenon reverse racism? When a group of people band together and ostracise another group of people, this looks like racism to me, pure and simple.

When you get an us and them mindset, and an unequal balance of power, discrimination is bound to be displayed towards the weaker group. The conclusion I have come to is that all types of people may display racist behaviour.

During apartheid, whites kept themselves separate from other groups of people, by ensuring other groups stayed in their own areas--this is what apartheid means, to keep separate. "Apart" is separate, "heid" means a state of affairs (and does not mean "hate"). Whites ironically were a minority group, but were the stronger group as they held the balance of power. South Africa is now a democratic country, but unfortunately racial tension still exists, and affirmative action rules now ensure that whites are excluded from many jobs, as demographics must reflect the demographics of society, so affirmative action laws currently protect the rights of the majority in South Africa. Of course, this was necessary, or whites would have remained in their jobs, at least in the short term. The problem is that the economy has not grown, so whites are seen as persona non grata, especially white males who are the last to be hired and only if no-one else has the required skills, and people from the majority group are now sought after for employment to meet equity targets, but there are not enough jobs to go around for everyone. So the colour of the workforce has changed, but society as a whole is not being uplifted. Disparity between rich and poor remains.

South Africa poses an excellent case study going forward, especially to see what happens to new minority groups when stronger groups come into power, like a new majority, and assuming an us and them mindset exists. Will all of the citizens who live in South Africa be able to unite and live as fellow citizens in harmony, without ethnic barriers, or will racial disparity continue? Time will tell.

Link to related blog article: Learning From the Fear That's Motivation For Discrimination

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