How Society Will Get Beyond ‘Race’
As humanity seeks to move beyond the false and ancient idea of ‘race’; the scientifically inaccurate and untrue idea that has caused the suffering of told and untold tens of millions of human beings, the true answer and only remedy is accurate and factual education on the topic of ‘race’. Every generation is made of new children learning about life, human history, and the world, and each child is susceptible to the harmful and dangerous ideas related to ‘race’ from the past.
Biological groupings separating people do not exist. Humans all originated from the same population in Africa, have interbred throughout history as the human genome project has shown, everyone shares numerous common ancestors and is part of the same family, and only skin color has adapted in an evolutionarily short amount of time, in fact you can change your skin color in a single day just by laying out in the sun. The idea that a person’s intelligence and ability can be judged by the color of their skin is completely false as verified studies and factual information have shown.
Every generation needs to be taught the scientific evidence proving that ‘race’ is not a real biological grouping, but rather is only a false imagined social idea. Every generation needs to be taught the human history related to the extreme dangers and cruelty of ‘race’ related ideas and of racism, and every generation needs to be taught the scientifically backed evidence that indeed all humans, regardless of skin color, are equal in terms of ability for intelligence and social behavior.
Is it Important To Learn About And Educate On ‘Race’?
When considering if it is important to educate the general public on accurate information regarding the equality of humans and the fallacy of ‘race,’ two key factors must be considered:
- Has the idea of ‘race’ impacted human history in any significant ways? and,
2. Has it been dangerous or a threat to humanity in the past, and is it still a danger today?
Three historical and current examples provide us an answer to these two questions:
‘Race’ Based Slavery
For hundreds of years in America, the painful bondage, forced labor and inhumane cruelty of slavery imprisoned millions of men, women and children under the guise that their ‘race’ and black skin categorized them as sub-human property, rather than as equal human beings. Over 2 million people died in unimaginable conditions aboard slave ships in the Atlantic, Over 4 million people died while being kidnapped and captured from their homes in Africa and led in chains on “death-marches” to the ships, and an untold number of African American slaves living in captivity in America were murdered at the hands of white Americans who attempted to forcibly claim ownership over other human beings. For 150 years in America after the abolishment of slavery, the American south developed into one of the world’s most overtly racist societies attempting to further abuse Americans with black skin. To this very day, hate crimes and hate speech are carried out in the name of white supremacy in the U.S., and America has taken no action to provide accurate ‘race’ based education in its public schooling system to solve and prevent these horrors from continuing to happen.
The Greatest Historical Threat To America: The Civil War Fought Over ‘Race’ Based Slavery
The greatest threat to the country of America was undoubtedly when the nation divided into two during the civil war; when conflicting ideas over ‘race’-based slavery tore the nation apart. As America’s President of the time, Abraham Lincoln, once said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure permanently half slave and half free. It will become all one thing, or all the other.” The southern half of America left the United States and then declared war against the USA, causing the bloodiest war ever in American history. Over 600,000 American soldiers died, consisting of nearly one fifth of the entire southern confederate male population. For over 150 years after the Confederacy’s defeat and until today, southern organizations have continued to enact racist laws, segregation, institutionalized racism, and spread racist public education to American citizens. Even into the 21st century USA, in states like Texas, public school textbooks educate children that blacks were not slaves, but rather “indentured servants,” and that Mexican-Americans want to “destroy American society.” The Cambridge dictionary defines indentured as, “To officially agree that someone, often a young person, will work for someone else, especially in order to learn a job.” Slavery was never agreed to by African Americans, nor was its purpose to help them. It was only a forced bondage of cruelty, pain and suffering that made white business owners extremely wealthy.
World War II: 85 Million Dead After White Supremacists Takeover Germany
In the 1940’s, in the largest war the world has ever seen that left an estimated 85 million people dead, World War II centered around the German Nazi party’s belief that their citizens were a superior ‘Aryan race’ and that other ‘races’ were only fit for death and submission. False and twisted ideas that claimed religious Judaic beliefs somehow turned people within a religious following into an inferior biological ‘race’ of ‘Jews’ led to the cruelest torture, abuse, and genocide the world has ever seen; where over 6 million men women and children were tragically killed over an untrue and dangerous idea of ‘race.’
The inaccurate idea that human biological ‘races’ exist has significantly altered modern human history and has caused enormous and tragic numbers of innocent people to be discriminated against and killed. ‘Race’ is a false idea. A false idea which is arguably the most dangerous one ever invented by humankind. The results of racism have been seen in many devastating and compassionless expressions in recent history, and racism continues to be spread, unchallenged, in America as America’s public education system has all but ignored the desperate need for an accurate education on the subject of ‘race’ to be taught. Racism isn’t going away, and racism is dangerous. Racism has caused the largest amount of American deaths worldwide due to war, and each generation is capable of continuing this terrible cycle of ‘racial’ violence when they are left uneducated on the subject of ‘race.’ The youth of America are left as sheep amongst the wolves; left being educated in racist ways of thinking through uninformed family members and an often ‘racially’ charged media, and doomed to accept ‘racial’ stereotypes from the past without an accurate public education on ‘race’ to challenge their ways of thinking.
When considering the question of “Is it important to educate the general public on accurate information regarding the equality of humans and the fallacy of ‘race,’” the answer is a resounding
The Solution: Education
Every generation needs to be taught the same lessons related to ‘race’ which are rooted in accurate science, accurate history and ideals of compassion and equality among all human beings.
Racism does not go away with time, as the great Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. explained; “ ‘Wait’ has almost always meant ‘Never,’ ” and “Justice too long delayed is justice denied.” Dr. King also lamented the “myth concerning time” in solving racism, calling it a “tragic misconception of time” to assume that its mere passage “will inevitably cure all ills.” Progress, he said, takes the “tireless efforts” of dedicated people of good will.
Every high school needs to teach a required class on the topic of ‘race’ in order to fully educate students on one of the most dangerously influential subjects in human history; one that they will also be susceptible to. We need a required class on ‘race’ within the public education system to protect students from racism, discrimination, bullying, violence, and to correct dangerous and false ideas of racism that continually are passed down through generations of family members who are not educated on the topic. We need a required class on ‘race’ within the public education system to challenge and correct the old ideas and stereotypes related to ‘race’ which originated from the days of slavery for profit, and from the former U.S. Confederacy, to ultimately create a healthy society for everyone, free from the terrors of racism.
In this 2-minute video, Jane Elliott explains how racism is learned and can be unlearned in America’s public education system while live on Oprah:
Statistics Show That Education Decreases Racism
Research has shown that higher education levels and higher intelligence levels are connected to decreases in racist opinions and attitudes.
In 2016 researchers from the University of Toronto examined three decades of data from the General Social Survey, which has periodically tested and measured Americans’ attitudes on a wide range of topics since 1972. Of the 44,873 surveyed for verbal ability and education levels, 28.8% of the highest scorers held opinions considered racist, compared to 45.7% of the lowest scorers who held opinions considered to be racist. Head researcher Geoffrey T. Wodtke concluded that, “Higher verbal ability is closely linked to rejection of overtly prejudicial attitudes among cohorts socialized during or after the 1950s and 1960s.”
A study conducted by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) found that 43% of Americans with no college education held anti-semitic beliefs considered racist, compared to 27% with some college education, to just 18% of those with a four-year college degree holding anti-semitic beliefs considered racist.
Another study from Bowling Green University found that as education levels increased, racial tolerance also increased and that racist opinions decreased, concluding that, “higher levels of tolerance are more likely to be found in individuals with higher levels of intellectual development.”
Further studies conducted compared childhood test scores with adulthood racist ideas. In studies by Dr. Hodson and Dr. Bussen, they followed babies from birth in both 1958, and also from 1970. The children in the studies had their intelligence assessed at age 10 or 11; then again as adults ages 30 or 33, and their levels of social conservatism and racism were measured. The researchers found that low test scores in childhood corresponded with racism in adulthood, and that conservative ideologies accounted for much of driving them towards racist attitudes.
Cognitive ability; broadly defined as a set of mental skills that allow an individual to learn from experience, adapt to new situations and solve problems, understand and manipulate abstract concepts, and use knowledge to act on the environment, is widely held to have a profoundly liberalizing influence on racial attitudes.
Dr. Wodtke explains that, “Higher cognitive ability promotes tolerance of racial out-groups and a sincere commitment to racial equality. Indeed, several studies now provide evidence that higher cognitive ability is associated with lower anti-black prejudice, lower authoritarianism, greater tolerance of out-groups, and greater support for egalitarian values among whites.”
The research shows that when students receive higher education, they develop more tolerant attitudes, and attitudes of racism decrease.
Why Education Decreases Racism: Understanding, Tolerance And Empathy
When understanding why higher levels of education reduce racism in individuals, it’s important to consider the experiences that students have and the information that students learn that help them become more accepting, tolerant, and compassionate individuals and less susceptible to believing stereotypes and racist ideologies. Consider; What skills are the students developing? What are they learning?
Dr. Geoffrey T. Wodtke explains that negative inter-group attitudes arise from narrow-minded, poorly informed, and undemocratic world outlooks, and that prejudice is the result of deep seated feelings of aversion to a group of people based upon a faulty and inflexible generalization. His study, The Impact of Education on Inter-Group Attitudes: A Multiracial Analysis, explains exactly why education reduces racism; “An advanced education attenuates prejudice and fosters a real commitment to racial equality by providing knowledge about the historical, social, and economic forces responsible for inequality; teaching the dangers of prejudice; neutralizing fear of the unknown; promoting democratic norms of equality and civil rights; and facilitating contact between racial groups.”[22a]
As the research suggests, higher cognitive ability and higher education levels decreases belief in racist ideas. While being uneducated on the topic of ‘race’, an individual might be prone to believe age-old, misinformed stereotypes, such as the inaccurate stereotype that “black people like to steal.” Someone educated on the topic of ‘race’ would have a deeper understanding of the studies related to skin color, crime and poverty. Through the time they had spent conceptualizing, learning and understanding the facts related to ‘race’, they would know that research indicates that crime is not connected to any particular skin color, but it is connected to poverty levels; to how desperately poor and in need someone is. They would understand that, in America for example, the past 150 years since the abolition of slavery has been one of extreme prejudice and discrimination towards people with black skin, forcing many into positions of poverty and desperation. Accurate education on the topic of ‘race’, where one learns the historical, social and economic forces responsible for inequality, enables a large percentage of individuals to understand, to empathize, and to become less racist. This is not an opinion. This is a proven fact.
The ability to understand another accurately and thoroughly promotes feelings of empathy and compassion. The foundation of empathy itself encompasses the ability to understand another.
In this 4-minute video, watch students as they first realize how privilege affects them in life:
Receiving an accurate education on the topic of ‘race’ allows people to see that ‘race’ is not a factual concept, and it helps bridge the gaps from the past that once separated and divided humans based on skin color and physical appearance. Being able to converse and discuss ideas related to ‘race’ in a safe school setting allow students to clarify misconceptions and further grow in their abilities to understand and to have empathy for one another. There will always be small visual differences in the ways humans look physically. Visual differences exist even between brothers and sisters, and parents and children. It’s part of the beauty of life, and differences should be cause for celebration rather than division. A compassionate and empathy based education on human variation ensures that students learn a peaceful, tolerant and accepting way of thinking when it comes to differences in appearance between humans, especially skin color.
The practice of empathy is currently reversing the tides of racism in Germany. Racism and nazi ideology is still a problem in many areas, and many youth are still being recruited into neo-nazi gangs. Judy Korn, co-founder of the Violence Prevention Network that offers rehabilitation for neo-nazis and Muslim extremists in Germany, has worked successfully with hundreds of individuals classified as violent racists. The chief skill that she teaches: empathy.
“If you work with violent people, you can be sure at one point in their biography, they stopped having the ability to feel empathy for other people,” says Korn, who has worked with right-wing extremists for decades. She explains that most of the neo-nazis her team works with come from abusive homes, severe alcoholism and other problems. “If you train people to feel empathy for themselves, you can train them to be and feel empathetic for another person.”
Korn also explains that time needs to be spent confronting inaccurate ‘racial’ views and ideas. Her organization has created standard training and debate-style skills to deal with individuals stuck in believing racist ideologies. Much of the rehabilitation consists of letting the young extremists talk and then asking them questions for accurate information related to their ideas, and doing so always reveals the lack of facts, knowledge and verified information on which their views are based. For example, Korn explained that a young Neo-Nazi recently claimed that the global financial crisis was caused by “Jewish bank executives.” Her organization’s trainer asked the young man to do research and to back up that claim with facts and analysis. He poked holes and found inconsistencies in the homework the young man did, proving his anti-Semitic assertion was unfounded.
“We show when they are not well informed,” Korn said. “We keep on asking questions.” Similarly, when conversing with Muslim extremist youth, they bring an imam with superior knowledge of Islam and a peaceful interpretation of the Koran, and she is able to correctly counter their angry assertions and backward notions.
While not all students hold strong racist beliefs and may not even have any ‘racial’ ideas they are aware of, the deep history of ‘racial’ prejudice in America has left numerous stereotypes, forms of discrimination, instances of institutionalized racism, and other painful remnants of slavery embedded within American culture, and it is of utmost importance that it is dealt with swiftly. The fact that many American government forms still ask for an individual to mark their ‘race’, an imagined concept disproved by science, is evidence enough that a problem still exists. A required public high school class on the topic of ‘race’ will provide accurate education and clarification on misinformed ‘racial’ ideas, and will give our youth the information they need to build a compassionate society free from the misinformation and terrors of racism.
When it comes to understanding the cure for racism, and in creating a truly compassionate world where all humans are indeed created and treated equally, having certain unalienable rights as listed in the Bill of Rights, the answer is in increasing education levels on the topic of ‘race’ by creating a required public high school class for all students to engage in. This is the only sure way to decrease racism; by giving students the accurate and factual information they need when it comes to one of the biggest issues dividing society; the fallacy of ‘race’.
The reason racism continues to persist in America is because education systems have openly ignored teaching serious classes based in science and fact on the subject of ‘race’. It’s time for us to do everything we can to make sure that the public education system accepts the dangerous consequences of leaving students without this education, and agrees to implement a required class on understanding ‘race’, in order to create a better, equal, safe and loving future world for our children and their children to come.
Every generation needs to be taught the same lessons regarding ‘race’ and given a compassionate view of human variation. They need an education on the scientific evidence which proves that ‘race’ is not a real biological grouping, but rather is only a false imagined social idea. They need to be taught the human history related to the dangers and cruelty of ‘race’ related ideas and of racism, and need to be taught the scientifically backed evidence that indeed all humans, regardless of skin color, are equal in terms of ability for intelligence and social behavior. Imagine a world where the public education system teaches students the facts about ‘race’, and where racism finally dissipates and a safe society for everyone is created. It’s not a matter of time, it’s a matter of education.
How To Get A Core Class On ‘Race’ Started In American High Schools: Raise Awareness, Have Meetings, Make Phone Calls And Gain Support
In order to get a desperately needed required core class teaching students accurate information on the topic of ‘race’, awareness needs to be raised on the topic, and phone calls need to be made to the decision makers in the education system, as well as to your state’s congressmen and congresswomen.
In the U.S., each state, together with individual school districts, establishes the curricula taught. Each state, however, builds its curriculum with great participation of national academic subject groups selected by the United States Department of Education.
Gather people in your community and share with them this free education on understanding ‘race’. Find the phone numbers for your local education leaders and congress members, meet with your local school principals, and voice your needs and opinions to them regarding having a required high school class which accurately educates students on the topic of ‘race’.
The popularity of ‘race’ related classes has grown tremendously in colleges in recent years, and the time has come for everyone attending public high schools to get accurate education on the topic of ‘race’ as well. If you think ‘race’ is too political for classrooms, think about what your silence on the subject says, and think again. A 2016 survey found that American teachers overwhelmingly agree that ‘race’ needs to be taught in American schools.
A compassionate, equal and safe society depends on a compassionate, equal and complete education; one that includes teaching students the facts about ‘race’. Together, we can work to implement such a class in all high schools within the United States, and use the proven way of education to end racism.
Make A Difference
We at Understanding Compassion would like to congratulate you on completing this 10 piece free online course on Understanding ‘Race’. Beautiful hearts like yours, who are looking to get an accurate education on the topic of ‘race’ in order to heal racism and the suffering it has caused throughout the world, are deeply appreciated and deeply loved.
Make a difference by challenging three of your friends or family to get educated on the facts about ‘race’ and to read these free 10 articles on Understanding ‘Race’.
In this 3-minute video, see the impact education had one one of America’s greatest heroes Frederick Douglass:
Understanding ‘Race’ concludes with two amazing pieces written by the great Frederick Douglass and the great Martin Luther King Jr.:
You are loved.