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It's divisive, that's what it is. The question of racism now seems to be more about the division between us rather than the inclusivity of us. It worries me.  

The very first thought in my mind when I saw that picture was obesity. Whatever colour you are, there are few excuses for that.

Don’t think it’s racist to post the image, but I’d argue that the topic that they’re talking about is.  Any phrase that starts “All white people are...” is by definition stereotyping according to skin

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Is it racism? Those words on the posters don't proclaim that the black race is superior to the white race, do they? According to the dictionary definition of racist/racialism they probably wouldn't qualify as racist, in pure terms. But divisive they most certainly are, and no doubt, offence will be taken, obviously by a lot of white people. There's a thing right there; to disagree with and deny those words and you'd immediately be labelled as a blind racist/white supremacist in the opinion of some. Thus any debate on this occasion could never be a balanced affair.

In the bigger picture, in a democratic society people like that group are entitled to their opinion, right or wrong. But who decides what's right and what is wrong? The media? Or other far right/left interest groups? Because the ever-opening umbrella of what is perceived as behaviour or words likely to offend covers a wide area of complex definition. Hasn't English law been updated recently to include other actions that haven't previously been deemed offensive? And Scotland also drawing-up bringing in new classifications of offence. It may leave people wondering how far it will all go.

Personally? Those words only serve to widen division, are unhelpful and cast a shadow on extensive and expensive efforts to bring society together.

Being an ordinary white guy, do I feel I'm racist? Of course I don't. Does that make me a latent racist?

Is that racially-motivated group representative of UK's black population? I'd say absolutely not.

Are they guilty of racism or is it really edgy and debatable free speech? I'd have to say the latter, referring to the lawful definition but I'd venture that many well-meaning white people feel offended and just as many people who will gently tut-tut, and move on.

It's a genre of 'free speech' which conveniently plays into hands of extremist groups of all colours and creeds, which in turn stifles any sensible and balanced debate...

Q: What's the answer?

A: What was the question? 

Edited by quilp
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Don’t think it’s racist to post the image, but I’d argue that the topic that they’re talking about is.  Any phrase that starts “All white people are...” is by definition stereotyping according to skin colour.  Would the racism question even be asked if the phrase on the board said “All black people are...” (add any word or phrase you like)? It would automatically be condemned. 

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I've been too busy to reply to people's comments - thanks for posting.

My view is that the image is likely to be used by bigots to sow divisiveness and push an agenda; and sadly I also think that what the image shows is also a bigotted behavour which is sowing divisiveness and pushing an agenda!

For classic racists it is easy to stereotype the woman in the photo, to associate her physical characteristics with behaviours they wish to denigrate [is using that word racist?].  Garden variety racists want to spread mistrust, confirm biases and reject opinions, not on any of their merits, but due to the race of the person expounding them.  I feel this image can all to easily be used for this agenda.

And a major reason why this is so, is because the ideology being presented in the image is in itself bigoted and is attempting to push an extreme view into the mainstream, using genuine concerns about racism as a wedge to insert a far extreme view of how to address racism's legacy.  That ideology wasn't developed by a particular racial group, and the race of the woman explaining it isn't relevant, but that isn't what a garden variety racist would want in their use of the image; they'd want to stereotype her, and link her race with the divisiveness of the ideology written out on the flip charts.

Intersectionality and critical race theory are pernicious, divisive doctrines and this has been dovetailed into a left-wing view of history and economic development to push an extreme political and economic agenda.  That agenda needs to be pushed back against - read this response by a maths professor enraged that intersectionists could claim maths is a product of white supremacism; or this article arguing that it is possible to separate the ideas a person professes, not only from their race, but also from racist views they also profess.

Enlightenment values have enabled the world to understand the importance of abandoning racism, even when their wellspring was a racist culture. Rejecting both the racist, divisive use of the image, and the racist and divisive ideology it portrays is important; and to do that you need to challenge both the extreme right and extreme left.

Fight the good fight.

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Not read the subsequent comments because I wanted to think about my reaction to the question / image itself first. Also the question I thought about is the one posed - Is it racist to post this image? Against whom?

1. Is Chinahand / the Tweeter   racist for posting it - No, not with the question they've asked -  they're stimulating a conversation.

2. Is the person in the picture / the poster racist - possibly. If it was a provocative title to stimulate the debate, no. If they were delivering a lecture about how all white people are racist - probably. Sharing this image to promote anti-White feeling would be racist - but I'm not sure how that image would achieve that - it doesn't scream a positive Black Power message to me.

3. Is the person who created / shared  the image racist? If it's been photoshopped to change the flipchart message, or they've changed the person delivering the lecture to present a negative image of an angry black woman. If the picture is genuine but the woman stood up and pointed at the flipchart and said "this is bollocks".

Basically if it in someways doesn't represent what was actually being said, what happened at the meeting or been faked, and then was used to create an anti-black narrative (imagine it with a Britain First logo in the bottom corner or retweeted by Trump) on-line. Then I do think posting this could be racist - against black woman.

tl/dr : context. 

 

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I reverse google imaged the picture and it turns out I'm wrong and it is genuine. There's a video-clip and the person in the clip does seem to be saying what the flipchart says. Although their tone of voice and demeanor aren't as angry their expression in the picture suggests. (Incidentally another error I made in my post above was to misgender them - they are non-binary.)

I've been reading a bit about how social media is pressing us into tribes and how we react to image and news depends on our political perception. As an example a psychologist showed left and right wing students images of a demo. Half of each group were told they were picketing an abortion clinic and half that they were calling for gay rights in the military. Asked whether the demo was peaceful the right wing students said it was if they thought it was anti-abortion and violent if they believed it pro-gay. The lefties the opposite.

I think I may have fallen into the same trap in believing the image was faked.

However, it was latched on and used repeatedly by anti-woke commentators. Why, when there were presumably less evocative images of similar events exist. One posted it just saying "Critical Race Theory in a Single Image" - why would a single image sum up a complex theory, unless you are relying on tropes and stereotypical thinking? 

 

tl/dr - I was wrong. But still ... context. 

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30 minutes ago, quilp said:

Replace the word 'white' with 'black' would it then be racist? 

 

 

By  "it" do you mean - the word, the flipchart slogan, the image or the act of posting the image?

How about if you change the person in the picture into a white man? What if he's wearing a KKK cloak?

I think the answer would largely be the same irrespective of the word on the flipchart or anything else in the picture - it depends on the context.

Everything else in the picture creates a context in the mind of the viewer. Where it is posted, the language used also create that context. 

So Chinahand can post it to stimulate discussion and nobody thinks he's being racist. Post it to a fascist website with a comment saying "Damn right we are!" or on an Anti-white Reddit group then, yeah, it's racist.  Change it to a KKK guy in front of the message "All White People Are Racist" could be an advert for the KKK or a racist anti-white stereotype.

Tl/DR: A black person stood next to a flipchart saying "All Black People Are Racist"  would be puzzling first and foremost. I'd need more info. Context.

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  • 1 month later...

I've been listening to The Northern Bank Job. Its an absolutely gripping portrayal of the IRA's multi-million pound heist from the Northern Bank in 2004.  This is after the peace agreement and some claim it was the IRA getting its hands on enough money to pay pensions to all the ex-Provos.  The truths of the robbery are masked in the violence and thuggery the Troubles brought out of Northern Ireland's psyche and that repressed capacity for thuggery is brilliantly caught in the story telling.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Thought this simple list of things everyone used to understand was interesting.

https://theelectricagora.com/2021/05/02/twenty-five-things-everyone-used-to-understand/

One's which stood out:

[6] Justice will only ever be partially served, no matter what you do, and it is dangerous to make its pursuit overriding of all other considerations.

[11] Even for those who live in modern, developed, peaceful nations and who are financially well off, life contains more suffering than happiness.

[20] Politics should matter less to you than your family and friends. This one I worry about a bit; I'm aware family sometimes forgive truly terrible politics and even terrorism.  There's a limit to family tolerance if a member of your family puts politics before family!

[23] Terrible people have produced and continue to produce great works of art and popular culture, the value of which persists, regardless of the character or conduct of their creators.

[25] The best comedy is almost always laced with cruelty.

Discuss!

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23.  It seems a fairly recent thing that if someone is found to be bad in some way, that it's no longer permissible to view their work.  That guy last week (actor, never heard of him before, can't remember his name) who had his Bafta withdrawn and ITV pulled the last episode of the drama he was in, for example.

11. Disagree - life is generally good under those circumstances I think.  Seems a particularly 'glass half-empty' view.

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