The limits of anti-racism

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@ Fidel

Absolutely it ran on slavery, and it was a very unfair system. As a small example, it was a law that a slave must be tortured before giving evidence in court.

 But Roman slaves were as often as not of the same race as their masters. Racism existed there, but it was in no way the most important determinant of class. In fact a hard racist policy would have gotten in the way of the roman strategy for conquering and holding territory.

And agriculture probably took a back seat to war when it came to feeding the troops. Germanicus set off on his German campaign primarily because the troops were restless and there was fear they might start looting at home.

THen as now, the wars were made to feed the army, not the other way around.

and @ Rebecca

Very well said. Thank you /


@6079_Smith_W: I think most slaves were won by conquering Mediterranean neighbors. Phoenicians and Greeks traded in slaves before them.  But, yes, at home there were generally two classes of Romans: rich and slaves with one prospering at the expense of the other. The rich generally loathe everyone but their own kind.

Their racist-imperialist ways confused us for a long time. They never really believed that any of us are inferior to one another except for a belief in themselves as naturally annointed and dictating with an iron hand.  The central plan for centuries was to keep us sheep as ignorant and ground-down by poverty as possible in dividing us against ourselves. War and poverty have been instrumental in the game of oppression. Peaceful and prosperous times tend to lead to no good ie. thoughts of democracy and revolution among the sheep. We learnt to live in fear of the iron hand as well as fearing each other for our minor differences. Hate and fear and ignorance are powerful tools of oppression in the hands of appalling greed.

6079_Smith_W wrote:
We all hear about the invasion of the Goths. In reality a good part of the Roman army, including some of its leaders, were Goths.

It didn't matter to wealthy Romans in the end because large numbers within the legions were barbarians. And in the end Roman soldiers themselves became bribed hirelings of the barbarians attacking Rome. Rich Romans were at the point when they felt they were above paying taxes in support of empire as it was for the corrupt Khan dynasty in China. The elitist Mongols were eventually chased out of that kingdom by an irate peasant rebellion.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Throwing up our hands and saying racism is "irrational" and "makes no sense" is a cop out, and is self-defeating. You can't fight racism if you don't understand its material basis, and that requires a class analysis.

It is in the interests of capitalism to promote and maintain racism as we know it today. Therefore the struggle against racism must necessarily be anticapitalist if it is to have any hope of succeeding.

For an example of anti-racist education and propaganda with a solid class analysis behind it, you need look no further than [url=]Black Agenda Report[/url].


Oh for fuck sakes M. Spector 

If you have read my words with any aim other than nit-picking, you know that is not what I said.

Or perhaps you can educate me as to how the amount of pigment in people's skin, the shape or their hairs, or their eye colour makes them any more or less of a human being. Because I am sorry, when it comes to understanding that connection, I really am ignorant, and don't have a clue where to begin understanding it.



The truth is that we are all Africans by what I've read. We originated in Africa. Scientists have said that any two black Africans are probably more genetically divergent than they might be from a non-African. And it's because Africans are of the larger source of the gene pool that never left Africa. That's right, Nordic blondes, Germans and any ethnics claiming purity are probably the racial equivalent of an Ozark Mountains hillbilly clan by comparison. It's really nothing to brag about where science is concerned.

The skin pigment excuse is not so far removed from more modern ones, like neoliberal labour market "flexibility", false terrorism paving the way for warfiteering, currency speculation, creating false shortages, false demand, the petro dollar, monopolies, price fixing, interest rates, competition etc.  Any excuse will do when crooking and robbing the lower classes.


@ Fidel

Good point. And to expand on that "less than human" argument the fact is the only people who are completely human are black african people who aren't part neanderthal like the rest of us. 

A genetic distinction but again, one which fails to provide any rational justification for racism.



I wasn't aware that we are related to neanderthals. You're pulling my leg, yeah?


Nope. I am quite serious. You probably knew already that we are all mongrels. But the fact is we really are mules, as in a hybrid of two species.


Analyst Surprised to Hear of it.

A policy analyst for the Department of National Defence said he was “surprised” to hear what the first ombudsman for the Canadian Forces once called a "systemic" racism problem within the Canadian Forces.  According to the DND, between 2001 and 2012 there were 290 cases of reported racism complaints within the Canadian Forces.  Maj. Patrick Hannon is a policy analyst on racial discrimination policy for the Department of National Defence.

Hannon, a white francophone, admits he has never experienced racism.  “On a personal note I’ve never experienced — in 25 years — racism or seen it.


Suspect arrested after masked man vows on video to kill Muslims in Quebec

Montreal police have arrested a man in connection with a video posted on YouTube that shows a man threatening to kill Muslim people in Quebec. In the video, a man in a "Joker"-type mask threatens the death of one Arab per week in the province.

To which Quebec's Security Minister, Pierre Moreau responded by implying that police had far more important things to be concerned about than having to divert resources away from other work.  Quebec policing must involve some rather grim work indeed if something like this hardly warrants their time.

Moreau also said investigating such incidents puts additional pressure on police resources.  "We're diverting our security forces, who have more important things to focus on," he said.


Do you think his reaction would have been the similar if the same 'Joker' had threatened to 'kill a Jew a week'? Or a cabinet minister a week? Probably not. Islamophobia has been relentlessly and officially promulgated since 911. This is just another manifestation of the results. And in the absence of Paris, this incident would probably not even make it to press..


Marie Henein: Not a feminist, not a surprise

Just reminded in reading the latest broadside at Feminist Current that it's been awfully difficult of late for transgendered women of colour, marginalized sex workers, professional women who also happen to be visible minorities to catch a break from this blogger.  What they have in common is that they all seem to be doing something wrong in the estimation of the writer.