In light of Mel Gibson's racist tirades that were recorded by his former girlfriend and relased to the public, it brings about the qustion "how can you tell when someone is racist?". Mel Gibson isn't somebody we would normally expect to be racist, because he's worked with all kinds of people with different ethnicities, and he's even cast many Mexican-Americans and Native Mexicans in his movies, like Apocalypto for example. But nevertheless, he made a few comments and used a few vulgar words that I doubt anybody would use if they were not racist or xenophobic. So it just goes to show that you never really know what somebody is really thinking, until they've had a little alcohol in them or until they've become a little agitated or angry, and then the truth seems to always come out. But how can you tell? Well, there's a few warning signs you may want to look for if you're trying to find out if somebody is racist. Not all of these warning signs are accurate in determining their true feelings, and it doesn't necessarily mean they are racist if they display any of these signs. But if you see a combination of two or more of these indicators, then there is definitely a strong chance that they are indeed a racist.
A racist person will often make jokes based on race, particularly in terms of races other then their own. Many comedians who are not racist will make racial jokes while on stage or in movies, and this does not mean they are racist. But a racist person will usually tell racial jokes more than other types of jokes, and will usually exhibit one of the other signs mentioned here as well. A joke that touches on a particular steroetype, such as African Americans being poor, or Asians being bad drivers, is a perfect example of a racial joke. When vulgar racist terms are used in the joke, then that definitely increases the chances of the person being a racist. A non-racist person will usually refrain from using vulgar words to describe an entire race.
Racists tend to blame many of their personal problems on other races. If a person loses their job and blames it on immigrants or other races, they probably are racist, though in rare cases they may just be telling the truth. Affirmative Action is real in America and for some, it may have a negative effect on their chances of getting a job if they are not a minority. But at the same time, minorities don't make up majority of the population in the United States, so there are many more scenarios where they may not get a job because they are a minority. A racist will usually not take this into consideration and will automatically blame Affirmative Action for being the reason they lost their job, even though it was most likely caused by other factors that had nothing to do with race. They may blame other races and ethnic groups for other negative things that are happening in their lives or in their environment. Crime is often associated with race by many racists, though the true reason you will find more crime in some areas with ethnic minorities is because of poverty and the social effects of it on the overall community.
Issues with Pretexts
Racists will often channel their racism through legit issues or topics, similar to a hidden agenda. This serves as a cover for their true motives, so they can have a defense when somebody accuses them of being a racist. For example, political issues like illegal immigration and social issues like welfare and government assistance are often used by racists to push an agenda, while masking their racial reasons for choosing those issues. If a person says that they dislike Mexicans, they will be labeled as a racist by many of their peers. Since majority of illegal immigrants in the United States are from Mexico, it serves as a perfect channel to vent their racial hatred and frustrations. If a person dislikes African Americans, it's not uncommon for them to choose to be vocal about people on welfare, because they will often associate welfare and government assistance with African Americans, as it fits into their stereotypical views. While some people may genuinely be concerned about illegal immigration and government assistance programs, a large majority only concern themselves with these issues because of their racial intolerance and ulterior motives.
Confederate Flags, also known as Rebel Flags, are one of the best signs that somebody is racist. This alone can serve as a primary indicator of racist tendencies, without the need for any other signs to be president. Some people will fly the flag in their front yard, while others may put a rebel flag bumper sticker or decal on their car or truck. Many wear it on tshirts and even bikinis. Not everybody who wears it may realize that it's a racist fashion statement, so in rare cases, the person may not be racist. But most people recognize it for what it is, while some will even try to excuse it for being racist and will try to claim that it's about heritage and southern pride. The truth is, the confederacy only lasted for less than 5 years, during a war that was mostly about the states' rights to allow slavery or not. Out of over a hundred years of southern history, it seems odd that somebody wanting to represent southern pride would pick that particular era of 4 or 5 years. The flag itself represents everything that era represents, a war in the name of slavery.
If there's anything a racist can't stand, it's the sight of an interracial relationship. If somebody is complaining about seeing two people who are of different races dating each other, chances are, that person is a racist. They will sometimes say things such as "I just don't believe races should be mixing" and will incorporate religion into it or talk about how they believe races should stay "pure". People who have a problem with interracial relationships obviously have a problem with the racial difference involved in them. All of their hatred, fear, or opposition, is focused on the racial aspect of the relationship, which in turn, makes them racist. There have been many cases where a father or relative have taken violent measures against their daughter or relative because they brought someone of another ethnicity into the family. This form of racism exists all over the world, and in just about every country and culture.
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