Racism is an integral part of fallen human nature.
The original sin was the desire to be "like God," the center of the universe. May I suggest that "all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God," every one of us is the center of his own universe, and we all tend to regard those who are more like us, or who conform to our standards, as more worthy than those who don't? Racism is but one form of prejudice, and prejudice poisons us all.
Let me show you how it plays out in my life.
My morning commute to Philadelphia is less onerous on those days when a certain black lady allows me to walk with her from the train to her workplace. On occasion she'll say something like, "I coulda did that myself." Not the textbook English I was raised to speak, that, and a sure sign of inferiority, right?
Well, no: textbook English or not, when the conversational ball gets dropped, she is almost always the one who gets it rolling again by punching one of my buttons. And her workplace is a prestigious hospital where she's a nurse practitioner, entrusted with life-or-death matters, something I can't lay claim to. Ain't nothin' to look down on there.
Or take the Filipina who works in the cubicle next to me, who can brighten my day by asking for help with work-related matters or by recommending a song she likes. Those communiqués often come in writing, complete with the kinds of errors I see in my editing work. Poor thing, it's not her fault she's Filipina: she must not be able to get that Asian brain around the complexities of English. But again, the rest of the story is that she is still editing our clients' manuscripts while I rightly got yanked out of the editorial department long ago. (And, lest you miss the irony, Asians score higher than honkies on every "intelligence test" ever devised.)
So if you're perceptive, you've seen that not only do I have to consciously fight racial prejudice, I'm also regionalist, sexist, education-ist, and language-ist. And if you were to see those two ladies, you'd also call me appearance-ist: they are both quite attractive, and you might well ask me about them the question I asked in an earlier post: would their favor mean so much to me if they were dumpy white guys?
The isms that I'm subject to are common to all of us to some degree; it's part of the sinful human nature Jesus died to save us from. So if Ron Paul is a racist, he's simply human.
Some forms of racism are more virulent than others.
I haven't delved deeply into Ron Paul's racist screed, but the line that sticks in my memory is a comment about black muggers: "They do run fast, don't they?"
That was obviously not the most intelligent statement uttered by a human being, but let's see. Most of the people on the USA Olympic track team, the National Football League, and the National Basketball Association seem to be black. Does running play a part in these activities? Is this disproportionate representation attributable only to training, or could there have been some natural resource inherent in these people on which to build?
(And lest I be accused of accusing blacks of deficient mental capabilities, let me repeat Thomas Sowell's observation that football, basketball, and jazz, areas dominated by blacks, require the ability to enact split-second decisions, unlike classical music and chess, traditionally "white" activities, which allow for slower thought processes.)
How virulent is Dr. Paul's racism? Let's answer that by comparing it with that of someone no one in the public eye accuses of racism: Barack Obama.
Mr. Obama presides over a nation in which most illegal drug-related activity is carried out by whites, yet most prisoners incarcerated for drug-related "crimes" are black. Not only are blacks more often incarcerated, their sentences tend to be longer. If that isn't virulent racism, I don't know what is. Mr. Obama has had three years to change the situation but hasn't. And none of the "non-racist" Republican presidential candidates has even mentioned the problem.
But for thirty years the "racist" Ron Paul has been calling for an end to the War on Drugs and for the release of those imprisoned for drug-related violations, including, presumably, those fast-running blacks.
Verbal assault like Dr. Paul's comment is not nothing, but given a choice between being verbally slighted by the power brokers and being stuck in a cage for years, I'll take the former, and I assume most black convicts would too.
We already live in a nation known for racism.
"American exceptionalism," an idea I hadn't heard of until a year or so ago, is essentially Hitler's master race concept couched in nationalist, not racist, terms. It is the province primarily of the right—Rick Santorum actually dropped the term in a recent debate—but when Madeline Albright spoke in the 1990s of the US as "the indispensable nation," she was a leftist saying essentially the same thing: the US is the best country in the world, and its citizens are therefore entitled to do things the rest of the world's inferior citizens aren't, like invading other countries, changing their governments, killing innocent people, driving them from their homes, and whatever else they need to do to protect and advance their interests.
I have heard both Dennis Prager (an "American exceptionalist") and an ordained Presbyterian elder say in as many words that Uncle Sam's killing of innocents overseas is justified because he is there to make life better for the local population as a whole. He targets only the bad guys, and therefore he can be excused when he kills the innocent, even though he knows innocent people will die as a result of his actions. ("Hey, you have to break a few eggs to make an omelet.") This about a nation both these men rightly disparage when it comes to the abortion holocaust and pornography.
How a nation that is so sexually immoral and so violent that much of the population thinks no one but the government should own guns lest there be mass bloodshed can consider itself ordained of God to police the world and kill innocent people with impunity is simply beyond me.
The US's most beloved presidents have been racists. One more won't hurt.
Everyone knows that George Washington and Thomas Jefferson owned slaves. Washington even signed a law that made hiding fugitive slaves a federal offense. They may have been good, kind masters—my black friend, somewhat to my surprise, once volunteered that her family had been given an inheritance by just such people—but the zeal they showed for the liberty of whites somehow did not apply to blacks. At least not their blacks. At least not until after they died.
Ah, but what about Lincoln, the Great Emancipator? Remember Dion's paean in the 1960s? "He freed a lot of people, but it seems good they die young." If anyone is beloved by both left and right, it's Lincoln.
Well, Lincoln was a racist. I have shamelessly copied and pasted the following quotes from here.
“I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been in favor of bringing about in any way the social and political equality of the white and black races — that I am not nor ever have been in favor of making voters or jurors of negroes, nor of qualifying them to hold office, nor to intermarry with white people; and I will say in addition to this that there is a physical difference between the white and black races which I believe will forever forbid the two races living together on terms of social and political equality. And inasmuch as they cannot so live, while they do remain together there must be the position of superior and inferior, and I as much as any other man am in favor of having the superior position assigned to the white race. I say upon this occasion I do not perceive that because the white man is to have the superior position the negro should be denied everything.” — Abraham Lincoln (Fourth Debate with Stephen A. Douglas at Charleston, Illinois, September 18, 1858; The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln edited by Roy P. Basler, Volume III, pp. 145–146.)
From Lincoln's First Inaugural Address:
"I have no purpose, directly or indirectly, to interfere with the institution of slavery in the States where it exists. I believe I have no lawful right to do so, and I have no inclination to do so."
Compare those to the words of the "racist" Ron Paul:
Racism is simply an ugly form of collectivism, the mindset that views humans strictly as members of groups rather than individuals. Racists believe that all individuals who share superficial physical characteristics are alike: as collectivists, racists think only in terms of groups. By encouraging Americans to adopt a group mentality, the advocates of so-called "diversity" actually perpetuate racism. Their obsession with racial group identity is inherently racist.
If this be racism, make the most of it.