World RacismQUESTION: World racism - Is racism an international issue?ANSWER:
Racism is a matter of growing concern amongst the nations of the world. Far from being a social ill restricted to one or two countries, the moral disease of racism spans communities, countries, and continents. Racism is a complex issue. At the core of any working definition of racism is the unspoken ingredient of fear. People around the world all belong to the same human race; they share the same tendencies to fear, domination, and subjugation. Hence, inevitably, racism is a world-wide issue. Darwin’s controversial theory of evolution
has contributed to the ignorance fueling racial conflicts. Over the years, peoples and nations exhibiting higher degrees of civilization have been deemed racially superior.
Mankind has been unable to embrace and celebrate the uniqueness of the various ethnic groups. Instead, fear has taken control. Xenophobia, defined as an intense fear and dislike of foreign people, or simply racial intolerance, is a disease reaching epidemic proportions.
Traditionally, ethno-national conflicts had to do with struggles over resources and land possession. Often these conflicts were tied to religious intolerance, a notable conflict being the Turkish Islamic vs. the Hungarian Catholics. More recently, globalization has added to this situation; trade and commerce between the nations aided by modern-day technology has increased the interaction of foreign peoples with one another. Anti-immigration has become part of the political debate in countries world-wide, especially in Europe; the outcome of many elections has hinged upon this question.
Racism world-wide is manifested in every continent. In Europe, extreme racist groups have gained more and more acceptability in countries like France, Germany, and Austria. In Australia, the Aborigines have lost much of their land and have been the victim of extreme prejudice. Not only has Apartheid -- legalized separation -- been practiced in Australia, it has been a well-publicized condition in South Africa. Many African countries have endured long-term civil wars, some beginning shortly after that nation’s freedom from former colonial countries. In Asia, Cambodians harbor extreme prejudices against the Vietnamese, and Chinese students have been forbidden access to higher education in Malaysia. In the Middle East, antagonism between the Israelis and the Palestinians continues to exist.
The only viable means of dealing with these human issues may be a deeply spiritual one. Mark 12:28-31 expounds on this point: “One of the teachers of religious law was standing there listening to the discussion. He realized that Jesus had answered well, so he asked, ‘Of all the commandments, which is the most important?’ Jesus replied, ‘The most important commandment is this: “Hear, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.” The second is equally important: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” No other commandment is greater than these."’”