Social Question

NerdyKeith's avatar

Is there one particular race who are more often victims of persecution in comparison to others?

Asked by NerdyKeith (5464points) May 17th, 2016

I had an interesting conversation with a fellow Irish person. He was arguing that black people are just as racist as (sometimes more racist than) white people. Then he brought up the argument that white Europeans have been put through slavery for a much longer period in comparison to black people.

So I wonder… In terms of how racial equality and discrimination is in the twenty first century. Is there any one race that tends to be victimised?

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24 Answers

RocketGuy's avatar

6 million Jews were killed in WWII.

Africans were taken from Africa to be used as slaves. I don’t know how many. Their ancestors are still discriminated against to this day in the US.

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

Everyone has had a turn at the whipping post.

zenvelo's avatar

How did he argue that as a group that white Europeans were enslaved far longer than any other group?

Slavery under the Romans was generally applied to conquered combatants. But various groups all over the world have enslaved others.

The Jews as a people have often been persecuted and enslaved (although many on here will state that is not historically accurate prior to 500 CE or so). Other than that, I don’t think any group has any particular claim to persecution on a global level.

Shia and Sunni have mutually persecuted each other for over a thousand years.

NerdyKeith's avatar

@zenvelo Well to be more precise he made the point that Irish were slaves for 1,500 years while black people were slaves for only 250 years. Here is a screenshot

But he wasn’t arguing over “any other group”, but comparing white people to black people.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

The “Irish were slaves” argument isn’t something worth arguing. It’s like countering someone who says the world is ruled by alien lizards like the Queen and Clintons, disguised as humans.

It’s also very recent, an Internet phenomenon, and very popular among white supremacists and neo-Nazis.

Jak's avatar

Native Americans. They’re still under the gun.

zenvelo's avatar

The Irish were slaves, but they also enslaved others. St Patrick was captured and enslaved in Ireland.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

@zenvelo Conservatives in the US say the Irish in America were slaves. They like the idea because in their minds it means the actual slavery and discrimination imposed on African Americans was nothing special.

JLeslie's avatar

I might be biased, but I’m going to say the Jews have been enslaved and oppressed over and over again throughout history. The blacks too. Black people were enslaved by other blacks, not just by white people.

I have a few Facebook friends who are black, who have some very outspoken black friends, and if I even imply Jews empathize and understand being targeted and oppressed and live with the history of having been enslaved and murdered, some of these outspoken black people freak out and don’t acknowledge any group has had it as bad as them. To that, I say, screw them. Mind you, I’m not saying screw you to all black people, just those who don’t acknowledge my people were led to ovens not long ago, and in huge numbers.

But, it’s not a competition. The groups who do best move forward past the dark times in history.

In Africa there were black people enslaving and brutally killing and raping other black people, think Rwanda, in recent history. They were different groups of people, but not really so different. Well, is any human being really different from other human beings? But, we are just talking about labels.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

”...sometimes more racist than white people” Um. And how did he try to qualify that one? On an individual to individual basis? Obviously, that’s not a claim he can make because he doesn’t know every white person or every black person. And if he wasn’t talking about on an individual basis, it’s factually incorrect as our society so easily demonstrates. White men hold the bulk of the power – end of story. There is no denying it. And the reason they hold the bulk of the power is because of what they did to ensure it. Black people are still systematically oppressed simply because of how society is set up. Arguing any other point doesn’t matter in the grand scheme of things, because it’s how society itself is set up that ends up affecting people.

@JLeslie I understand your general frustration, but the simple fact remains: Jewish people no longer suffer the same kind of oppression. Black people still do.

DoNotKnowMuch's avatar

@NerdyKeith: “I had an interesting conversation with a fellow Irish person. He was arguing that black people are just as racist (sometimes more racist than white people).”

Your fellow Irish person could just have well have said, “Pizza jump pickles moth balls gum!” and made just as much sense. When we talk about racism, it often makes sense to talk about it in terms of the power and powerless. In other words, a black kid wondering if his parents will be able to afford dinner that night might resent or hate white people. Who gives a shit? But if an employer is racist and less likely to hire this kid’s parents, we have a problem.

So, I’d be interested in hearing whether this Irish person has anything to say about institutional racism, intergenerational poverty, whether the difference between dragged in chains from your homeland and treated like cattle had any lasting effect that is comparable to the Irish experience, and whether the color of one’s skin and the ability (or lack of) to blend in has any bearing on the conversation.

And most importantly, I find it difficult to understand how the suffering of one group of people is only legitimate if their relative persecution is high on the imaginary persecution scale.

Jak's avatar

Let me just jump back in here and say that I don’t care for this question. I keep seeing questions like this where we are trying to find the MOST of something. Recent all or nothing questions; Who is the LEAST popular candidate- Hillary or trump, which country has the MOST beautiful shape, who is WORSE trump or his protesters,what musical instrument MOST personifies James Bond,is more duct tape ALWAYS better…
What is this obsession to rank thins as the MOST extereme, the BEST ever seen, the GREATEST ever, the WORST possible…
It’s ridiculous. Why can’t we stop overstating things?
Being discriminated against is not a contest, and there really shouldn’t be a sliding scale against which we measure these things.
What we SHOULD be doing is looking at who benefits. Divide and conquer. Look closely at history. It was illustrated recently for us in film though I haven’t seen it yet. But the concept is right there in the open for all of us to see. The small percentage of rich people who control everything tell poor white people that they’re better than black slaves and they’re gonna rise up and rape our wimmin if’n y’all don’t faght the wah of northern aggression.
Imperialism and colonialism, taking away the land not only from Africans but yes the Irish and Scots, the virgin islands, Hawaii, hell, Asia, the Americas. We’re all subject to a genocidal elite that want us stupid, sick, dependant on outside sources for our very sustenance, too distracted by panne et circum to notice our own enslavement and fighting with each other over who has it the fucking worst.

Jak's avatar

“There will be, in the next generation or so, a pharmacological method of making people love their servitude, and producing dictatorship without tears, so to speak, producing a kind of painless concentration camp for entire societies, so that people will in fact have their liberties taken away from them, but will rather enjoy it, because they will be distracted from any desire to rebel by propaganda or brainwashing, or brainwashing enhanced by pharmacological methods. And this seems to be the final revolution.” Aldous Huxley

RedDeerGuy1's avatar

The human race.

JLeslie's avatar

@DrasticDreamer I’m very willing to say that it’s different for black people in more than one way. I think the biggest hurdle is black people still live in the country they were enslaved in when it comes to talking about America. I think psychologically that is harder.

It depends what specific topic is being discussed. One time it came up talking about the black church in Charleston. I said something about being really disgusted white Christians and some republican politicians tried to spin that as Christianity and Christians are being attacked and are less safe. Fuck that! I was so pissed anyone tried to water down the fact that this was a violent act, murder, against blacks and the black community. In the conversation I talked about how I grew up always feeling that when I was in a synagogue I, we, were targets. A handy place for antisemites to drop a bomb, and that black people probably have that fear also, and that statistically there is reason for it, and that white Christians do not have anywhere near the violence against them. He wouldn’t listen to me this one guy, he just flipped out that I would even bring it up.

Of course, this is one guy, or just a portion of black people, not all of them, who think black people are the only people who have suffered. I’m just saying it irks me.

It’s not so much that I’m competing, I was empathizing. That empathy brought and brings a lot of Jews out to fight for civil rights. It’s annoying when it seems those who benefit are being ungrateful. Forget that a lot of these same black people were against gay rights and flipped out in holy anger that anyone would call gay rights civil rights.

I do have examples of blacks coming out to support Jews when they meet antisemitism, so I am not painting a brush, but it’s not a lone person either.

DrasticDreamer's avatar

@JLeslie I understand your points, definitely not trying to vilify you or anything. Just saying why it’s different.

@Jak I agree with you – for the most part. However, sometimes the only way people can get others to understand the hardships they experience is to blatantly point out why it is so different between groups. Otherwise, those better off end up saying “Well, it’s good enough”, and that’s never true.

Coloma's avatar

I think the racist flavor of current times is Muslim. Everyone else kinda takes a backseat IMO.

Jak's avatar

@Coloma that’s because they get the most media coverage. The owners of the media ensure what you hear about.

JLeslie's avatar

@Coloma I don’t know how reliable this site is, but even if it’s off by a little Jews win in America for hate crimes against then.

Those stats are just about religious hate crimes, so it doesn’t include crimes against black people or other races and ethnic minorities. It’s also only covering America, not the world.

Cruiser's avatar

Women. Women of all races and religions have gotten the short end of the stick since the dawn of man.

Dutchess_III's avatar

^^^And we have a winner!

SecondHandStoke's avatar

^ Yup.

Fluther will eat this up with a fork in both fists.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

This question and most of the answers make me sad. It is 2016. Everyone should know by now that there is no such thing as “race”. It is a word to loosely describe variances in one species (homosapiens).

Being from a particular continent, such as Africa, does not qualify as being a different race. Nor does being from a specific country, like Ireland, China, or indigenous people whose home and is taken over by settlers from a different area.

One’s religion has nothing to do with “race.”

A group’s cultural differences has nothing to do with “race”.

@Espiritus_Corvus is right. Everyone has had a turn at the whipping post.. This includes women,the LGBT community, the elderly, children, people who are mentally and/or physically disabled, the so-called “bi-racial” product of parents from different “races”, nudists, vegans, IQ and personality scores, etc. The list goes on.

Why is it so hard to let go of these mental stereotypes and not accept or judge individuals based upon their actions? And as someone who is just as guilty of using this type of unfounded judgement, it is a constant question posed inwardly.

zenvelo's avatar

@Pied_Pfeffer Yes, …everyone has had a turn at the whipping post. except for straight white Protestant males, who feel victimized that everyone else is getting the opportunities they feel is their birthright.

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