Monday 20 November 2017

Bad manners and foul behaviour do not have a colour

In tip-toeing around the question of race in this country, we are actually proving how racist we are, says Emer O'Kelly

THE Concise Oxford Dictionary, in the edition published in 1962, with additional material added in 1964, 1966 and 1968, and in a 1984 reprint, defines racism as "belief in the inherent right of one race to rule over another".

That's short, but anything but sweet. And it certainly doesn't cover any of the inflammatory arguments that have ruled the western world for the last 25 years or so as to what actually constitutes racism and racist behaviour.

Yet it post-dates the fierce and vicious violence carried out against black activists and their white sympathisers in the Civil Rights Movement in the US, when people of one colour were tortured to death for daring to believe they had a right to be treated equally with the rest of the population of their country, and when similar tortures were perpetrated on the white people who supported them. Such a white person was a "race traitor" and deserved hideous punishment.

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