Racism in America is Alive and Well (Letter 18)

Dear Y.B.M.:

racismI trust that you have great relationships in your life.

Things are changing a little in light of Barack Obama becoming president. However, racism, for the average black man in America, is still a reality and she ain’t going nowhere. You need to hear that in the raw because it is true, very true, and because there are many who will not impart to you that truth.

While I was growing up, no one, straight out, told me that racism still existed. It wasn’t until I was a grown man did I fully realize that racism and prejudice were still around and were deeply rooted in American society. Do not believe the lie that race relations are getting better. They are not! In fact, they are getting worse and more subtle, and will continue to get worse. Get it in your head: RACISM IS ALIVE AND WELL AND SHE AIN’T GOING NOWHERE! Why is racism here to stay? Here are some things you need to understand:

First, racism is rooted in pride which is rooted in sin which is rooted in the hearts of all men, be they black, white, red or yellow. Jeremiah tells us in Jeremiah 17:9: “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” Racism is insidious. Although a man may not look like a racist on the outside, he may very well be a racist on the inside. And there is nothing that anybody can do to change another man on the inside.

Second, you need to understand firmly that this thing called racism, is not confined to the white man. It has its grips on the black man as well. This means that you, yes, you, may even be a racist yourself. Surprised?

Third, racism may not be the hatred of another race as many believe. Racism is simply pride — somehow foolishly thinking, “because I am white, or because I am black, or because I am Latino, I am better. I don’t really hate anybody, I just think that my race is superior.”

Fourth, there is only one real solution to the sin problem of racism and that is the sin-bearer—Jesus Christ. Only Jesus Christ can change a man’s heart from hate to love and from pride to humility. Even after he has allowed Jesus Christ to come into his heart, he will have to allow God to crucify his pride daily.

Racism is here to stay. You will probably have to deal with it from both sides, for the rest of your life, but thank God there is hope, and that progress is taking place.

Fighting Racism from the Inside Out,



Dr. Benjamin E. Mays said, “If I were you, I would stand for something, I would count for something, and no man would push me around because my skin is black or his eyes are blue. I would stand for something. I would count.”

Bobby Seale said, “You don’t fight racism with racism, the best way to fight racism is with solidarity.”

Martin Luther King, Jr. said, “I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality…I believe that unarmed truth and unconditional love will have the final word.”

Abraham Joshua Heschel, “Racism is man’s gravest threat to man — the maximum of hatred for a minimum of reason.”


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