Positive or affirmative action is a plaster applied to a gangrenous wound, prettied by being painted over in white
- Dead in protest
A police officer shot and killed a man without cause or due process. The incident took place just over three years ago in the city that was the capital of the empire on which the sun never set. It happened again this year, in the land of the free, a sadistic observance of the third anniversary.
Both victims were young men of African descent – the politically correct term the two hubristic white nations that purport to be the best in the world use when they mean “black.” Deriding that word, of course, is enough to pride oneself in not being racist.
Meanwhile, the police shoot unarmed men that fit that description. The reason, whether it is said out loud or not, is that these men conform to a prejudicial profile of suspected criminals. The illegal activities they are said to be undertaking are ones that law enforcement officials are actively looking for, and targeting those of a specific physical and ethnic type in the process.
The police was wrong in both cases. When citizens pointed this out to them peacefully, they retaliated forcefully. A quick escalation, with the public reaction getting out of hand, led to militarisation of the police. Unlike the disturbed white men who deserve compassion even when they shoot innocent children, the media did not mince words when denouncing these ethnic rascals. Stereotyping, and that is a euphemism, exists, leading to routine suspicion, rudeness, and belligerence.
Institutional racism not only exists, but is prevalent. It may be a difficult truth to accept – the world is more inclined to believing the feel-good truths spun by Hollywood. People want to believe that those dark days are history. The guilt of those past crimes are acknowledged in popular accounts, ending in redemption, not of the wronged parties, but of the inhumane oppressors.
However, when politicians acting in their professional capacity, either on the floor of the parliament or in official addresses and statements, coin new terms such as “terrorist murder” that do not exist in statutes because of the perpetrators’ race or religion, and defend privileged citizens who may flagrantly be guilty of wrongdoing, they give a glimpse of the ugly truth.
The ruling class is programmed to believe in its superiority. On a global scale, this self-perpetuating myth translates to the Western white man being a god. The rest are animals, barbaric and backwards. Armies are entrusted with the protection of the white man and the propagation of his power, and are, thus, trained in line with the myth.
Positive or affirmative action is a plaster applied to a gangrenous wound, prettied by being painted over in white. It does not stop the authorities from briefing themselves about the young men of African descent who are drug dealers and abusers, and the young men of Middle Eastern and South Asian descent who are terrorists. One black man being the occupant of the White House does not change the way the world works.
Applying Western principles of human rights to countries that are not as developed – development entails social, cultural, and legal strides being made as much as economic ones – is worse than judging the West’s past atrocities, including the heinous crimes of imperialism and slavery, by today’s standards.
Excusing its barbarism by arguing that it was not developed – indeed, it can be argued with merit that the West was hopelessly behind many of whom it colonised, and remain so in many respects – is as arrogant and unacceptable as imposing its will as universal values.
Confirmation bias of this kind, especially in the face of the West failing to uphold or obey the very same sacred tenets it has prescribed for the rest of the world, needs to be rooted out without exception. Governments should, further, focus their attentions on getting their own houses in order, on the proverbial fingers pointing back at them.
The flashpoints of the London Riots and Ferguson are indicative of a deeper malaise, of the fabric of the respective societies rotting away without being acknowledged or tended to, because their governments are too busy ruining things for everyone else as well to fix their own cancerous problems.
The preference for policies that suppress and bring others down to their lowly levels over those that elevate themselves remains as clear as ever. They ought to revisit the conscience that spawned the humane values they use as justification for the unjustifiable when it comes to others, and listen to it. At least then hypocrisy cannot be added to their lengthy charge sheets.
Source: Dhaka Tribune