Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Does having a Racial Identity lead to Racial Conflict?

When dealing with the issue of racial identity, sometimes people decide to deny or reject identifying with their race because of the conflict race has caused. One does not have to look far in order to see that having a strong racial identity can lead to racial conflict. For instance, the civil rights conflict of the 1960s in the United States. One should note that when I say "racial identity" I do mean just the color of your skin, but also the culture, ideals, philosophy behind your specific ethnic group(s).

Does racial conflict justify rejecting the idea that it is important to develop a racial identity? I don't believe that the above argument works. There are many things that bring about conflict. For instance, the existence of the nation-state brings about conflicts between groups of people. Obviously, this isn't justification for ridding the world of nation-states. Just because something can bring about conflict, it does not mean we should reject it.

It is important to see that having a racial identity does not necessarily bring about conflict. In fact, I would argue that the more we think and discuss this issue the less likely conflict will come abou. The reason being, people will have a better understanding of what other people are thinking. (Though this is not always true, and we should be careful to avoid making our racial identity the core of our identity.)

Also, there are sad consequences for rejecting our racial identity. People forget their history when they don't have a racial identity. The past helps us discover who we are and what is best for the future, and it is tragic when this is lost. Lastly, we can't rid ourselves of our racial identity. Our race is a part of who we are and denying that it exists, denies a part of who we are as human beings.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for your comment, I'll review it as soon as I can!