Rassismus ergibt sich nicht aus Macht und Vorurteilen

Ein Artikel nimmt sich noch einmal dem Argument an, dass eine Diskriminierung wie Sexismus oder Rassismus nur dann vorliegen kann, wenn derjenige, der diskriminiert einer Gruppe angehört, die  Vorurteile und Macht hat  („+ Prejudice + Power „)

The fact that the R=P+P argument leads to such ridiculous terms as “reverse racism” is indicative of a mistake in reasoning. Such a concept would break down as soon as you applied it to other moral transgressions. Let’s take murder as an example and apply the same one-directional culpability based on supposed power. I doubt that people who make the R=P+P argument would be comfortable with altering the language to say that if a white person kills a racial minority it is called murder, but if a racial minority kills a white person it is not murder. If the latter occurred would it make any sense for someone to claim it is “reverse murder”? Likewise if a poor person were to assault a rich and powerful person it would be no less considered assault than if the powerful person assaulted a poor person. The crime is still the same despite the power imbalance in each case. In a court of law if the poor person’s defence was to say “your honour what I did is not assault it is only reverse assault and it’s not wrong because he has more power than me,” such a claim would be laughed out of court and rightly so. Being a racist is not against the law but it is still considered to be immoral.

Eben. Was am Rassismus nicht gefällt ist der Umstand, dass jemand aufgrund seiner Rasse abgewertet wird oder wenn eine Gruppe als ganze wegen einer körperlichen Eigenschaft herabgesetzt wird. Das bleibt vollkommen gleich, wenn derjenige weiße Haut hat. Auch dann wäre die Behauptung, dass er aufgrund seiner Zugehörigkeit zur weißen Rasse minderwertig ist, falsch.

If we consider racism to be morally wrong then it should be regarded as wrong for everyone in society regardless of their race and social status (if you think racism is ok for some people then you might be a racist). The only exceptions usually made to moral or legal rules are for people we would normally consider to lack or have diminished agency such as children, insane people and some mentally disabled people. Therefore if only white people can be racist due to P+P theory, it is giving all other races an exemption to a moral standard which is not only unfair but also insinuates that people of other races are less responsible for their actions than whites. An inconsistent application of moral responsibility based on race is inherently racist since it implies these people have less agency to act morally. This is often referred to as the bigotry of low expectations.

Auch das halte ich durchaus für ein gutes Argument: Wer meint, dass der andere abwerten kann, der legt ihm eine geringere moralische Verpflichtung auf und lässt ihn insofern ein schlechterer Mensch sein.

Er hält ihn in gewisser Weise selbst für minderwertig, weil er ihm mehr Freiraum gibt.

This above video is a good example of how the R=P+P narrative can warp peoples thinking and allow them to excuse themselves or others for racist actions. Notice how the Asian girl recounts an incident of racism committed against her by black men and the black lady immediately tries to silence her whilst another person in the crowd yells out “but R=P+P”. There is also the controversy regarding Bahar Mustafa, a student union leader at Goldsmiths university in the UK, who requested that white people not attend a university event and used the hashtag #killallwhitemen. When responding to accusations of being a racist and incitement to violence her defence was as follows: “I, as an ethnic minority woman, cannot be racist or sexist towards white men, because racism and sexism describe structures of privilege based on race and gender.”

Und damit wird ein Doppelstandard errichtet, der allenfalls dazu führt, dass man diese Gruppierungen als unfair wahrnimmt.

I mentioned earlier that the R=P+P assertion is Anglocentric in origin and application. I have not heard any of its proponents apply the principle to countries in which white people are a minority population and do not have institutional power. If they did so they would have to accept the opposite of the conclusion that only white people can be racist, at least in that context. It would mean that white people living in Asian, African or middle eastern countries cannot be racist since they are a minority in countries where the institutional power is held by the native ethnic populations. This would be the case even if they held racist views. So if some neo Nazis or KKK members decided to emigrate from the USA and move to Zimbabwe they would cease to be considered racist as soon as they are living under Robert Mugabe’s oppressive regime, even though their mindset and hatred of blacks and jews has not changed.

Hier würde ein Vertreter vielleicht argumentieren, dass selbst in einem vollkommen von schwarzen Machthabern regiertes Land der Weiße eben bezogen auf die Welt immer noch der Privilegierte ist. Aber bereits dazu muss er unglaubliche Verrenkungen geistiger Art durchführen, denn die tatsächliche Macht liegt ja nun bei den schwarzen Machthabern, Polizisten oder sonstigen Personen.

Gesteht er das zu, dann müsste er in der Tat zu dem Ergebnis kommen, dass ein weißer Rassist in solchen Ländern dann kein Rassist mehr wäre, schlicht weil er keine Macht hat.

This is a logical consequence of equating racism with the ability to enforce prejudice via institutional power. Similarly when a power shift takes place such as when the ANC took over as the ruling party in South Africa, would the R=P+P proponents have us believe that any white South Africans who were racists during the apartheid era are suddenly unable to be racist towards the majority black population now that the state institutions are run mostly by blacks? If it was eventually the case that the demographics of the USA shifted and a vast majority of institutions were controlled by Hispanics, they would have to conclude that only Hispanics can be racist and that members of white supremacist groups cannot be racist but only prejudiced, since they are not in power and neither are members of their race. Also what happens if the power is equally shared? If there was an exactly equal representation of white and black people holding institutional power and a white person made a racial slur towards a black person, would it only be half as racist as it was in the past when whites had a greater share of the power? Similarly, if white people were in power would an individual who is half white and half black be considered more racist than somebody who is 100% black even if they both had the same racial prejudices against Mexicans or Indians?

Durch die Zuspitzung sieht man ganz gut, dass das Konzept nicht wirklich trägt. Vermutlich würde sich ein Vertreter damit herausreden, dass es einen Zustand, in dem nicht einer die Macht hat, gar nicht geben kann oder dann eben tatsächlich kein Grund mehr für Rassismus bestehen kann und es deswegen dann auch keinen mehr gibt.

Aber das ist eine Illusion, denn natürlich bilden Leute weiterhin Gruppen und werten andere ab.

These are some of the absurdities which arise from collectivist thinking of the type which gives rise to the P+P definition. The collectivist thinking that would have you believe that a homeless white veteran with PTSD has more power and privilege than Barack Obama, or that white people living in poverty in trailer parks have more power and privilege than the children of wealthy black, Asian or Latino parents who are Studying at Yale or Harvard. Those who hold this view require us to believe that it would not be racism if a gang of young men from an ethnic minority decide to go out and beat up a white person for no other motivation than their hatred and resentment of white people. Even if you pointed out that this act is itself an exercise of power and that they were using their overwhelming power in the situation to act on their racial prejudice, the answer would be that this is not the power which matters. All these confusing logical consequences, absurd conclusions, contradictions and ridiculous phrases such as “reverse racism” disappear if we reject the P+P definition and continue to use the actual definition of racism. It is not only more parsimonious and useful, but in it its neutrality it is also less racist.

Das sind Punkte, die dem Konzept immer wieder entgegen gehalten worden sind. Es ist denke ich gut, die Argumente parat zu haben. Man wird zwar nicht zu den Fanatikern durchkommen, dazu hängt zu viel für sie von diesen Theorien ab, aber vielleicht macht man anderen deutlich, zu welchen absurden Ergebnissen diese Theorien führen.

Vgl auch: