Are accusations of raicsm/sexism/bigotry abused?

Man, I wish that were the case. Instead, finding something which is racist with perfect consensus is virtually impossible - even cases where someone was called “nigger” to their face get downplayed. Or, to put it more bluntly, there are people who would deny that the president - who started his run by accusing Mexico of sending us drug dealers and rapists and, well into his presidency, both-sidesed (yes, I’m verbing that noun, and you can’t stop me) neo-nazis and anti-fascist protesters, then called a later speech where he condemned the neo-nazis the biggest mistake of his career - is racist.

How do you make literally any statement, up to and including lynching a black man while shouting “nigger nigger nigger” at him, “controversial” on the question of whether it’s racist or not? Simple - have President Trump do it.

You are either being purposefully obtuse or are stupid and I don’t think it’s the later.
Saying that a race is better or worse at something inherently is clearly racist. On the other hand, in the video I linked, a sports scientist stated that the Kalenjin ethnicity in Kenya is the best in the world at endurance running, because of evolutionary advantages. Thats not inherently racist, but certainly can be seen as that.
I use sports since ethnic and racial stereotypes have a long history in organised sports and still persist in many cases despite many having been disproved.

Cheap tactics? Like what, asking you to cite your claims? That’s the main thing I’m doing.

Or there’s my pointing out that you’ve incorrectly leveled this charge against me in the past, and your deliciously ironic interpretation of that as some sort of personal attack on you.

Seriously? Okay, I’ll jump through this hoop, with the understanding that it’s the one hoop I’ll jump through on your orders.

You think a major part of the problem is that people such as your coworkers–for whom you have tremendous respect–never engage in real discussion with the kinds of people that frequent this board. In you opinion, mostly what we end up with is situations like this where mostly middle class white people, many if not most of whom have never had any legitimate interaction with minorities as a true equal, have conversations with other white people about how bad another class of white people are.

Some people “see” more of it than others, because of course individuals differ on what are valid and invalid claims of racism. If one approaches it from a perspective of “[Other person] said is racist but I don’t find to be racist, therefore [Other person] is either hysterically oversensitive or a member of the uber-PC thought police trying to shut me down”, then one will perceive a higher percentage of claims of racism to be invalid. That doesn’t mean that isn’t racist (nor that it is); it merely demonstrates a rather narrow and self-centered approach to assessing these claims.

Assuming what the sports scientist said was true, why would a fact be racist? That and the tactic of labeling all manners of commentary as racism, or bigotry, or hate speech is what leads to a rejection of the notion.

This is a warning for personal insults. Your points can be well made without this type of rhetoric. If you feel you must, the BBQ Pit is right around the corner.


“The Kalenjin ethnicity in Kenya is the best [subgroup] in the world at endurance running,” if indeed correct, is not a racist statement.

Extrapolated to “blacks are better runners” it becomes so.

We needn’t go back over why this is, right?

It’s true that a fact can’t be racist, but it’s entirely possible that a claim is, especially if the criterion used to accept that claim as fact is predicated on racist stereotypes. The basic “I already want to believe this, so I accept it as true without any justification” mindset.

People just accept that Kenyans are the best runners. When people just accept it without any evidence, study or reason, I’d say that’s stereotyping, even though it may actually be true.

Well this is interesting. I don’t recall agreeing with anything you’ve said 110% like this. You’re spot on the money with this one, though. I can’t agree more.

This sounds like the tactics of our very own in-house racialist Chief Pedant.

Agreed, that’s what I meant by that “circular argument” part. I wasn’t sure because a quick google only turned up that phrase as legalese about documents you could reject out of hand, which seemed counter-intuitive.

That sort of stereotype doesn’t just pop up. The so-called stereotype of Kenyan marathon runners being better than average is evidence based.

Like the so-called stereotype of Jews being good at basketball…

No, some people have evidence of the claim and therefore conclude the stereotype is true.

Others believe the stereotype is true and therefore conclude there is evidence somewhere out there for it.

I’m not accusing you of either, so please don’t feel attacked, but even if I grant that you have done your due diligence and arrived logically at that conclusion, I know a lot of ignoramuses who fall in the later category.

In short, the racism (or lack there of) behind a claim cannot be ascertained by the objective truth of the claim, rather it can only be surmised through an understanding of how the individual came to believe the claim was true.

I don’t think that’s possible to do in Watchmaker fashion, though, so simply observing a possible belief in a stereotype is insufficient to establish how that belief was arrived upon.

You know that’s an apple to cabbage comparison. Tsk!

What if the knowledge comes by a deference to authority and thru no true critical understanding on the part of the individual who comes to the same knowledge as that authority figure who did his/her due diligence? Sort of similar to laypeople’s knowledge that there is an inverse relationship between space and time?

I think the word major is an overreach, I would replace it with significant.

I wouldn’t say real discussion so much as immersion in african american culture. (I’m fine using African American in this context, but I prefer to use the term black when describing people). I think many people interact, get along with, and have minority friends and neighbors - but that is different than having a high level of daily interaction with a minority group on an equal footing.

I think many people have good intentions, yet these intentions lead them to demonize others too quickly over unsettled, vague, and rapidly changing social mores than are not agreed upon by even the offended demographic and often rely more on an individual’s perspective than any agreed upon societal norms. A Tower of Babel if you will.

And there is all kinds of racism, that is something I believe. There is racism that is hateful, there is racism that is unconscious, there is racism born out of simple ignorance due to things such a geographic isolation. There is also racial bias which is different than racism. To get more specific, I think that not all these should be treated the same.

I have some other points, I’ll get to them tomorrow and also include the cites, graphs, circumstantial political data etc. that you requested - if I have time.

Are you serious?

(emphasis added).

I mean, I’m glad you’re softening your statement; doing so makes it less absurd. But your eyerolling and moaning about how I misunderstood your point is pretty much at your feet in this case.

By all means do so. But if your point is that a significant problem is that some white people don’t immerse themselves in African American culture, suddenly we’re not so far apart in our views, and I no longer need cites for your claim.

No, it’s apples to apples. I get that you don’t *like *them apples, though.

I don’t think that “shutting down debate” is limited to situations where you are physically excluded from debating. These are only the most extreme examples.

Shutting down debate through accusations of racism is usually an exercise in thought policing. It doesn’t really work, except against liberals. But liberals are starting to develop an immunity to this tactic and moderates have been rolling their eyes at it for years now.

Some people would call that scientific racism.

There is also a long history of ethnic and racial stereotypes in education and intelligence that persist, in many cases, despite being disproved.