Op-ed by Rev. Michael Vaughn –
One thing that gets on my nerves, among others, is when folks state that everything (and everyone) that they do not like is racism. The people that see racism in everything need to know that they are actually being used to downplay the real ugliness of racism. When something is said or even done that someone doesn’t like gets labeled racism, it is a weakening of this word and the hurt that it can (and has) truly caused. In order to properly label something or someone as racist, they need to understand what the definition of racism really is. To not know is to buy into the emotionalism that the media and the 2020 Democratic Candidates for president would have us believe. A simple definition of racism is, “prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior”. If someone does not like this definition, they are welcome to come up with their own and be consistent with it when they apply it.
President Trump and those that support him are often called racist. However, when one looks at the definition of racism, folks are hard pressed to line up what the President says or does that would align to what the definition of racism really is. The reason why I say this is because in order to truly be racist one as to either know what someone is thinking because part of the definition is “a belief that one’s own race is superior to another”. Because belief is part of the definition one has to have someone’s own statements or look at the actions that they have taken over a period of time that show what they believe. Therefore, based on this definition much of what is decried as racism is just certain things the people who are trying to be manipulative don’t like. Therefore, they label that action racist and get a ground swell of support against it and hope to have that action or behavior thwarted.
When President Trump wants illegal aliens sent back to their home countries, it is not racism. Folks are trying to get into our country ILLEGALLY and he is trying to uphold that law. That is not racism! When a TV weatherman makes a gaffe on television and refers to Martin Luther King Park and “coon King” that is not racism. That is a legitimate mistake! When someone doesn’t want history rewritten and therefore wants a monument to stand, that does not say that they are racist. That says that they just want history to remain as it was and therefore true learning can come from it.
I’d almost say that those that decry racism the most are they themselves practicing racism. Why has there never been an African-American Speaker of the House? African-Americans support democrats at a 90% level. It appears that some African-American would be qualified. Why wasn’t Mayor Lovely Warren initially supported by the Monroe County Democratic Committee. If they are in need of African-American votes, why not endorse a qualified African-American for the highest office in the city? The list goes on and on. There is a saying that, “to the victor goes the spoils”. Democrats have won countless elections off the votes of African-Americans. However, the spoils seem to go everywhere but to African-Americans. Maybe this happens because the Democratic Party does not view African-Americans as capable as they are. Maybe there is a cultural racism in the democratic party that states that, “we need the African-American vote but we do not want them in positions of leadership.”. If that were to be the case, seems to me that that is where we need to look for racism.
Racism is a horrible thing and we, as a society, should not tolerate it. However, labeling everything as racist takes the true “sting” out of it and frankly makes those that have this labeling fetish look ignorant and shows the true nature of who they are; people whose way of getting done what they want and stopping what they don’t want is to place a hated label on someone or something. That is not racism, it is manipulation!
Rev. Michael Vaughn currently serves as senior pastor at New Wineskin Church in Rochester. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
(The views expressed on our opinion pages are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the position or viewpoint of the Minority Reporter.)