RACISM

Racism takes many forms and can happen in many places. It includes prejudice, discrimination or hatred directed at someone because of their colour, ethnicity or national origin.

People often associate racism with acts of abuse or harassment. However, it doesn’t need to involve violent or intimidating behaviour. Take racial name-calling and jokes. Or consider situations when people may be excluded from groups or activities because of where they come from.

Racism can be revealed through people’s actions as well as their attitudes. It can also be reflected in systems and institutions. But sometimes it may not be revealed at all. Not all racism is obvious. For example, someone may look through a list of job applicants and decide not to interview people with certain surnames.

Racism is more than just words, beliefs and actions. It includes all the barriers that prevent people from enjoying dignity and equality because of their race.

racism

Racist County

Forsyth County

The Most racist county in america. Oprah named this county as sundown county. It not safe for black skin people to stay out at night. They are the law.

Black Lives Matter

People aren’t born with racist ideas or attitudes. Racism is something that is learned. Some also believe racial groups should not mix. A belief in racial superiority or purity can lead to racial hatred.

Many people experience racist behaviour.

This Georgia County Drove Out Every Black Resident

Between the 1860s and the 1920s, white Americans pushed out thousands of black residents from their communities.

Stacey Abrams’ victory in the Georgia Democratic gubernatorial primary put her one step closer to becoming the first black female governor in the U.S. To understand what Abrams is up against in November, when she’ll compete against two Republican men in a red state that has only elected white men, it’s useful to look at the state’s history of white supremacy and how that legacy affects Georgians today. One county in particular shoulders an especially egregious past.

Racism forsyth county supreme justiceThe northern county of Forsyth, one of Georgia’s 10 most populous, leans heavily white and conservative. Its demographics are shaped by an event that happened in 1912, when white people forced out all 1,098 of Forsyth’s black residents, who comprised about 10 percent of the population at the time.

Growing up as a white boy in Forsyth, writer Patrick Phillips says that he’d always heard that the county had driven out the black population to protect its white women after black men had raped and killed one woman. As an adult, he researched the real story and published his findings in Blood at the Root: A Racial Cleansing in America.

“There was in fact a white woman who was murdered in 1912 and her name was Mae Crow,” he says. “She was 18 years old and she was found under very mysterious circumstances beaten and bloody and unconscious in the woods.”

 

The case is still unsolved, and will likely remain so since there are no more living witnesses. Yet at the time, “the only young black men living in that part of the country were accused of the crime,” Phillips says. “A man named Rob Edwards was lynched almost immediately on the town square, and this turned out to be a lynching that most of the community participated in. Thousands of people showed up to watch the lynching and joined in and fired bullets into his corpse.”

The county also lynched Oscar Daniel and Ernest Knox, both teenage boys. After that, white vigilantes drove every black person out of the county, and enforced its borders as whites-only well into the 1980s. Black families disbursed to different regions, some moving north in the Great Migration. Many, Phillips says, moved to neighboring Hall County, Georgia.

This expulsion wasn’t a bizarre anomaly in one part of the country. Between the 1860s and the 1920s, white Americans drove thousands of black residents from their communities.

Since then, many of these communities have remained almost exclusively white, according to the PBS documentary Banished. In 1901, white residents of Pierce City, Missouri, lynched three black men and banished 300 black residents. By 2000, the census reported that the city had remained majority white: out of a population of 1,385, only 0.22 percent—i.e., three people—were black. A 1905 expulsion in Harrison, Arkansas left a similar legacy, as the 1912 campaign in Forsyth. Today, Forsyth’s population is only 3.6 percent black.

How racial Descrimination started?

Racism has existed throughout human history. It may be defined as the hatred of one person by another — or the belief that another person is less than human — because of skin color, language, customs, place of birth or any factor that supposedly reveals the basic nature of that person. It has influenced wars, slavery, the formation of nations, and legal codes.

During the past 500-1000 years, racism on the part of Western powers toward non-Westerners has had a far more significant impact on history than any other form of racism (such as racism among Western groups or among Easterners, such as Asians, Africans, and others). The most notorious example of racism by the West has been slavery, particularly the enslavement of Africans in the New World (slavery itself dates back thousands of years). This enslavement was accomplished because of the racist belief that Black Africans were less fully human than white Europeans and their descendants.

This belief was not “automatic”: that is, Africans were not originally considered inferior. When Portuguese sailors first explored Africa in the 15th and 16th centuries, they came upon empires and cities as advanced as their own, and they considered Africans to be serious rivals. Over time, though, as African civilizations failed to match the technological advances of Europe, and the major European powers began to plunder the continent and forcibly remove its inhabitants to work as slave laborers in new colonies across the Atlantic, Africans came to be seen as a deficient “species,” as “savages.” To an important extent, this view was necessary to justify the slave trade at a time when Western culture had begun to promote individual rights and human equality. The willingness of some Africans to sell other Africans to European slave traders also led to claims of savagery, based on the false belief that the “dark people” were all kinsmen, all part of one society — as opposed to many different, sometimes warring nations.

One important feature of racism, especially toward Blacks and immigrant groups, is clear in attitudes regarding slaves and slavery. Jews are usually seen by anti-Semites as subhuman but also superhuman: devilishly cunning, skilled, and powerful. Blacks and others are seen by racists as merely subhuman, more like beasts than men. If the focus of anti-Semitism is evil, the focus of racism is inferiority — directed toward those who have sometimes been considered to lack even the ability to be evil (though in the 20th century, especially, victims of racism are often considered morally degraded).

In the second half of the 19th century, Darwinism, the decline of Christian belief, and growing immigration were all perceived by many white Westerners as a threat to their cultural control. European and, to a lesser degree, American scientists and philosophers devised a false racial “science” to “prove” the supremacy of non-Jewish whites. While the Nazi annihilation of Jews discredited most of these supposedly scientific efforts to elevate one race over another, small numbers of scientists and social scientists have continued throughout the 20th century to argue the inborn shortcomings of certain races, especially Blacks. At the same time, some public figures in the American Black community have championed the supremacy of their own race and the inferiority of whites – using nearly the identical language of white racists.

All of these arguments are based on a false understanding of race; in fact, contemporary scientists are not agreed on whether race is a valid way to classify people. What may seem to be significant “racial” differences to some people — skin color, hair, facial shape — are not of much scientific significance. In fact, genetic differences within a so-called race may be greater than those between races. One philosopher writes: “There are few genetic characteristics to be found in the population of England that are not found in similar proportions in Zaire or in China….those differences that most deeply affect us in our dealings with each other are not to any significant degree biologically determined.”

Oprah Talks About Racism

racism forsyth countyIn 1987, The Oprah Show had only been on the air for five months and trouble was brewing in the deep south. Forsyth County, Georgia, known for being a hotbed of racism, was in the headlines for some residents’ hostile response to local civil rights protests. For the first time, Oprah left her studio and headed straight into the eye of the storm. “What are you afraid that black people are going to do?” Oprah asked the all-white audience of community members. “I’m afraid of them coming to Forsyth county,” one man said. “I lived in Atlanta—I was born in Atlanta—and in 1963 the first blacks were bussed to West Fulton High School. And I go down there now, and I see my neighborhood and my community, which was a nice community, a nice neighborhood, and now it’s nothing but a rat-infested slum area because they don’t care. They don’t care.” Not everyone in the attendance that day shared his indignation. At least one woman contradicted the media portrayal when she said, “I just really hate to think that it’s going to take either someone black or white getting hurt or losing their lives before people can sit down and talk this out. It is a time for change—there’s nothing we can do about it

“There were 1,098 blacks living there in 1912. Within a matter of months, it had dropped to 30. It’s the largest racial cleansing in America that I know of.”

In the early 1900s, there were more than 1,000 African Americans in Forsyth County, Georgia, comprising 10 percent of the population. But in 1912, whites violently expelled all black residents from the county. Today, Forsyth County is home to about 150,000 people, more than 95 percent of them white. In January 1987, a white martial arts instructor in Forsyth County organized a brotherhood march in honor of the first federal holiday honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and with the intent of countering the area’s racist image.

But en route to the event a bus full of marchers was assaulted by a crowd of white supremacists chanting racial slurs and throwing rocks and bottles. In danger of physical harm, the marchers turned back. A mob of white men and women shouting and waving Confederate flags Two weeks later, a much larger march involving 20,000 civil rights activists and supporters from across the country headed back to the county in protest. An estimated 5,000 counter-demonstrators also showed up. This large demonstration cost Forsyth County approximately $670,000 in police overtime, angering many local taxpayers who were unhappy at having to foot the bill for what they saw as outside agitators.

racism forsyth countyThe town subsequently levied large parade permit fees to discourage future demonstrations, but that effort was disallowed by the U.S. Supreme Court in Forsyth County, Georgia v. The Nationalist Movement, 1992. A historic newspaper headline reading “Negroes Flee From Forsyth: Enraged White People Are Driving Blacks From County” These events brought national media attention to the area. News crews and The Oprah Winfrey Show descended on Forsyth County to investigate. The governor set up a biracial commission to try to heal the racial rift, with little success, and a legal team began to assemble a lawsuit on behalf of the descendants of the black families expelled in 1912. While no suit was filed in the end, the team gathered compelling personal stories and hard evidence of widespread land loss.

racism forsyth countyAdverse Possession Building on this evidence, Cox Newspapers reporter Elliot Jaspin was inspired to trace land deeds and tax rolls back to 1912. He found further proof that the majority of the property owned by the banished African Americans was never sold, but instead taken by their white neighbors. Called adverse possession, this process is partly statutory and partly common law, and involves the legal acquisition of a title to a property without having to pay for it. In the case of the land in Forsyth County, white residents simply held the property belonging to black residents following their banishment. In the state of Georgia, the period of adverse possession is seven years. After this period of time, whites legally owned the land. White title attorneys such as Phil Bettis plead ignorance regarding the appropriation of black-owned land, but some descendants of these black families have declared that the property is rightfully theirs. With missing title transfers and deeds of sale between former black residents and current white property owners are often missing; therefore, returning the land in Forsyth County to the descendants of its rightful owners remains a controversial and legal challenge.