Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Race and Outliers

The epilogue at first appears to be the final presentation of a randomly selected and researched outlier. But we soon learn that the closing outlier narrative is in fact a narrative about the author, Malcolm Gladwell. We learn, perhaps not surprisingly at this point, that Gladwell’s own successes are rooted in the hidden advantages and subjective opportunities that his parents and grandparents received.

In other words, an outlier is often the product of other outliers.

Among other important issues, Gladwell explains how light skin color allowed his otherwise disadvantaged black relatives to excel in ways that their fellow dark-skinned Jamaicans did not. Having an ancestor who had “a little bit of whiteness” or having one who got a chance at meaningful work became an “extraordinary advantage.” It was an advantage not simply based on working hard but rather on arbitrary yet powerful cultural and structural factors.

What stood out to you concerning Gladwell’s discussions of race or skin color and outliers? Why or how so?


…and this one might be tougher, what issues concerning race or skin color should those of us trying to think seriously about the distribution of hidden advantages and subjective opportunities for students at SIUE be considering at this point?


dominic williams said...

Although Gladwell pointed out key factors of how race or a "lighter tone" of skin plays a major role in your life, I do not think that anybody or thing should be subjected to it. We all know our past, dealing with slavery and racism. Constantly reminded of it, we tend to feel like society owes us something. When we achieve something, we have to let it be known. But why? We will never be able to be truly free of racism unless we expel race out of minds. We steady form black supremacy classes or talk about "how the man wants to hold us down." If a group of white people wanted to start a white only group, we will be the ones to holler racism. Why? Is it because of our own insecurities, or that fact that we might think that we should be the only people able to form our own little special groups? It shouldn't matter if they’re a majority or minority, they are human and they deserve the same rights as us. When President Obama won the election, the African-American people were rejoiced to have a black president. However, as a country we should have been proud to have change, we should have been proud to get a chance to correct our wrong for having Bush in office, but all we saw was Obama's skin color and race. I have a question, if Obama was Republican and McCain was Democratic, would the African-American's still have voted for Obama? In my personal opinion, they would have because they wanted to say someone like them us did the impossible. I am glad that he won, but not because of his color or race, but because of the change that will come to our country to better it. So, with all that said, I would have to agree that race should have nothing to do with anything. Our success as a single person, or as a country as a whole, should rely solely on us.

robyn rhone said...

I believe the issue of skin color goes back to the issue of slavery. Like mentioned in the book the slaves who had the lighter skin tones were not the ones in the fileds, and performed the easier task. I think the slaves who had the lgither skin tones were sometimes the children of slave masters. And I highly doubt that the slave masters would have their children in the fields doing extrenous work. The slaves recognize what is going on, and notice that the ligher ones are getting treated better than the darker ones. I think because the slaves became acustomed to this type of descrimination in a way, it was passed down through generations that people with lighter skin are better than people with darker skin.On page 282of the book sociologist Fernando Henriques talks about how the darker members of the family will be kept out of the way. I think that is terrible. I dont think anybody should be judged based off of their skin complexion. And to treat a family member in that way is rediculous.

H. Rambsy said...

Thanks for the comments so far.

Dominic: I'm unclear what you mean by "black supremacy" classes at SIUE. I'm also unaware of any black-related classes that concentrate on "how the man wants to hold us down."

As for the comment about what people of color here would do if white people started all white groups, well, SIUE actually has several such organizations. The most well-funded honors programs at the university are, as it turns out, among the whitest groups on campus.

And as far as I know, students of color here have not seriously addressed it nor have they elected to "holler racism," even though there are serious racial inequalities at work.

Wesley Sloan said...

What stood out to me was Gladwell's discussion of race and skin color. It made me think of how our predecessors have determined the way we live now and how the decisions we make will affect future generations. I think the world would be a friendlier and better place if there was a way we could go back in time to somehow fix the cultural prejudices that have evolved into what they are now. But obviously we can't and the only solution to bring us all together regardless of race and skin color is by the decisions we make now for future generations.I believe we are progressing towards racial equality and acceptance but there is still a lot of work to be done; work that will hopefully be completed by the cultural decisions our generation leaves behind. It all comes down to "cultural legacy" and I think we have some part in determining not only our fate but the fate of others who will become outliers.

Janssen Shaw said...

To sort of piggy back of Robyn's comments, I also believe that the issue of skin tone/color roots all the way back to slavery days and is still present today. Even at my job back at home some tasks are distributed very unevenly. African American employees (usually dark skinned) get the more intense and straining assignments, more fair skin individuals don't even break a sweat during the work day.

To comment on the second portion:
At this point the only hidden advantage (not so much hidden) for individuals of the African American race at SIUE that concerns me is the G.A.M.E and F.A.M.E. program. I was a member of G.A.M.E last year, and you don't see many other organizations on campus that are focused on the advancement and success of a particular race.

ByHisCharis said...

I appreciate everyone's comments. I would also like for us to consider a variable that may be getting overlooked pertaining to the "announcements" of African American-focused organizations on campus: the campus's demographics. On a predominately Caucasian campus, an announcement may not be deemed necessary, but for the "handful" of students from ethnicities that do not make up a preponderance, it is indeed a call for them to know that there are opportunities to "connect" with peers from similar backgrounds. This, however, does not mean that they neglect opportunities to experience cultures for which they are not familiar. Furthermore, university administrators tend to encourage "announced" groups for a variety of reasons that can ultimately benefit the university's funding. So, whether one sees race, color, and/or ethnicity as subjects -- along with evidences of their advantages and disadvantages -- to simply get over and bury with the "n" word, if it were as simple as such, the complexities would not be as haunting.

H. Rambsy said...

Thanks for the contributions Robyn, Wesley, and Janssen.

I agree with your points about links to skin color and slavery. There was certainly a system in place that addressed skin color, and the legacy of that system are still with us in a number of ways.

re: programs that promote a particular race.

Well, it's true that few programs at SIUE announce themselves as "black," "white," "Indian," or "Asian." But check the memberships, and they are typically an individual racial group.

Admittedly, black groups tend to announce their racial politics. The all white ones tend to avoid mentioning their racial allegiances, though they are clearly there.

tiawanathomas said...

Gladwell talked about how Jamaicans scrutinized the shade of one another's skin and played the color game with each other just as the whites did. "The brown-skinned classes of Jamaica came to fetishize the lightness." This stood out to me because this will cause a race to be torn and divided within itself. In order to eliminate such issues we have to see pass skin color and learn how to accept a person for their works. Even when others in our own race don't agree, we must continue to work until we are successfully satisfied.
Here at SIUE issues of racism and skin color do exist. For instance, the are predominately white and predominately black sororities and faternities.

Taleah J said...

I enjoyed reading Gladwell's point of view on the advantages of having lighter skin opposed to having darker skin. This is relevant in todays society as well. Currently still in the black culture, we look at being dark skinned as a bad thing and being light skinned as a good thing. Even in todays society why do black, educated, successful men always go out and get them a white girl, sometimes they may get a sister but of course she has to be light skinned. Rarely will you ever see them with a dark skinned women. Why? Is it because black men feel as though society will not give them as many advantages by being with a darker skinned women.Other culture's as well like hispanics and mexican's. If hispanics or mexican's are born with a darker skin tone they are treated unequally and are not given the same oppotunities given to the lighter hispanics or mexicans. I think that this world would be a much better place if everyone wasn't so divided or put into catergories. I believe everyone should be treated equally regardless of whose lighter and whosee darker. Its all silly to me.

Jennifer Okosi said...

no need to be raw, but the talk about racism and slavery makes me furious. growing up i never knew there was such thing as a greater or lesser race. no one ever told me my anestors were inferior to those of pale skin "white" people. not until i came to the states and discovered a whole new perspective of human hierachy.

ever since 3rd grade i have heard all "black" teachers talk about the same case of racism and slavery that african americans have endured. it irratates me because my ancestors were never brought to this country and i was born an raised on the mother land. it is true that while i'm in this country, and my skin being the color that it, then i am classified as the rest of us. but that is the main issue. there is a seperation of people by, white, brown, red..all which are bacis colors in a coloring box. it is also true that whites sold blacks into slavery, and treated them like they were less human, but why are we...people of color in present times...still holding on to those disturbing memories.
i think most black people are safer knowing racism exist, so that way they always have something to blaim. we even have problems with people of our own kind, for example fair-skin and dark-skin. i highly dismis any arguments made towards the two because like people say, "to them you still a n***." the black community has lost hope of the thing that represents them most..the color of their skin. its so bad to the point where black idols such as Beyonce and Sammy Soasa are endulging in the "whiteness," by bleachin their skin.

the topic of lighter skin and darker skin is similar to a house negro and field negro. the light-skinned negros where children on the master and a black mother, so they stayed in the house with the master, such as would a house negro. whereas a dark-skinned negro was a negro wit every pint of blood and stayed in the field with all the other negros. the master would always do more for the fair skin negros than the dark skin negro. so i think people still have that mind set where being light-skinned is better than being dark-skinned.
i have to say that i love my dark you?

Katrina Sivels said...

The history behind the author is inspiring. He turned his history of his family into the success story of his life. Even the parts about slavery and his mother overcoming her darker skin in a country that was obsessed with lighter skin. It is apparent that the author comes from a long line of Outliers.

I like the way he concludes the book. It is true that we attribute our successes to events that happen around us and our community. It is a collection of things. It is those events and how we use those events to our advantage is what makes us successful.

I like the message of this book. How Outliers are successful because we live in a society now where people are obsessed with conforming and being the same as everyone else. These stories show that you can be different and go against the grain and prosper most for taking the risks in life. Risking to be yourself and hone your skills instead of being like everyone else and letting your talents and skills go to waste.

Chris jones said...

Before I answer, I must praise Dominic Williams. Dominic, I couldn't have said it better myself. I wish to elaborate, but first a bit about skin tone. Being of a lighter complexion, I was given many opportunities I feel I would not have gained without it, such as acceptance in many social circles. My light skin tone led to seemingly easier interactions with my peers, the vast majority of them being white. I could blend in easier in certain situations. A perplexing thing I've noticed through the years is that I often face ostracism from other African Americans for being too "light." I think this is wrong.

And now, the point Dominic raised. "We will never be able to be truly free of racism unless we expel race out of minds." This is so very true. Whilst there are certainly different cultures,the idea of race is a lie. It is a sociological concept invented to subjugate. Until we begin to view ourselves (humanity) as one united people, we can make no true progress. I agree that while we do all have differences, to much emphasis is placed on them. I see too much anger, too much misplaced resentment. All too often this leads to division amongst the so-called 'races.' With the environment on the brink of ruin, countries on the brink of war, and the global economy in shambles, we must stand together, or very, very soon, we might find ourselves not standing at all.

Alycia Peebles said...

In Gladwell's discussion about race and outlier, was that fair person did not endure the hardship that many dark colored ones did. Education was very hard to come by if your skin color was dark and there were n financial assistant programs nor banks that will credit you.You would have to be lucky and favored to have gotten an opportunity.
Also, luck played its role to thos thught of as 'outliers.' Gladwell stated towards the end that an outlier is not an outlir at all and i can agree. Those people,as he stated, do have 'a web of advantages,inheritances, some deserved, some not, some earned, and some just plain lucky.'
I believe that the students here at S.I.U.E. that are either' light colored or dark-skinned should should take advantage a great opportunity when they see one instead of by-passing school as a dreamer. There are so many programs and scholarships out there that can are really helpful and for students of a dark-skinned races. Many student wait for opportunities to come to them instead of taking the time to go and grasp great opportunities.

Keondra Walker said...

Gladwell's discussion about lighter tones playing a big role in your life is something that I feel is true. Dominic stated that "we will never be able to be truly free of racism unless we expel race out of our minds." While this statement is true, it will never happen. How do expel something out of your mind that you constantly see. Racism will always occur to some extent as long as different races exist. This is no different than sexism and ageism. We are always going to be treated differently according to our age, sex, and race. I believe that lighter skinned people are (most of the time) at an advantage because of their fair skin. There are many people who say they would rather date a lighter skinned person, hang out with a lighter skinned person, hire a lighter skinned person, or even want to be a lighter skinned person. There are many Black people who don't want to be in the sun for long because "they don't want to get dark/black", or they don't want "to get a tan." Black people have their own racism within their own race. There is always a battle between "being light-skinned" and "being dark-skinned". Some people even think a lighter skinned person is automatically more attractive than a dark-skinned person.

Also, to piggyback on what Dominic said about Black people voting for Obama because he was Black and that if he was running as Republican we would have voted him in still. I strongly disagree with this. I believe people voted for Obama yes because he was Black, but also because he was running as Democrat. People voted for Obama because of the change he was promising, and he could relate to many Blacks AND Whites. I don't think if Obama was running as Republican, talking that same stuff Bush was talking that Black people would have voted him in. In fact, some may even have scolded him for siding with "the man" (whoever that is). And ruled him an "uncle tom."
Yes, it may be true that lighter-skinned people have a bit more of an advantage than darker-skinned people. No different than a man having an advantage over women. They're both wrong! But until we all merge into the same color, racism and discrimination will always exist.
Of course it would be nice to demolish discrimination of all kind, but will it ever happen? Probably not. The only thing we can do is try to help make it better.

N.L.W. said...

I agree with Robyn, problems with skin color arose from slavery and I think it is sad and demeaning that human beings were looked down upon because of the color of their skin.
I also agree Janssen that discrimination against skin color still goes on today. Clearly not nearly as bad as what it once was; and it is slowly changing but it's still wrong. Not too long ago did Abercrombie and Fitch and Hollister start hiring people of African American decent, and that wasn't until people complained. Then they began to seek out minority employees to diversify their business. I know a couple people hired by both companies (all light skin or fair skin) and they still don't get as many hours work as everyone else. Hopefully with time that will change.
In sociology class, we discussed race and my professor brought to the classes attention that she worked at few restaurants before and if African Americans work there, that you wouldn't see them waitressing most of the time. They stay hidden because the boss wouldn't allow them to. My professor is not African American and she said she quit because of unfair treatment.
Will these forms of racism ever stop?
I'm not quite sure.

Nia W.

Brittney Spiller said...

I think that the issue of color goes back beyond the time of slavery. It seems to be something that has plagued humanity since the time of keeping records. In all reality we know that your skin tone does not automatically reflect your capabilities as a person. However, it does appear to still play a major role in society today. This is unfourtunate and I feel that it should encourage non-whites to prove the stereotypes wrong and become "outliers" themselves. Just because there is a popular belief in stereotype does not mean you have to play into it as a person. I am a person of mixed backgrounds myself and one of the first questions people always tend to ask me is "what are you?". Naturally I want to respond with an equally as stupid answer, but as much as I want to kick myself for saying this, race/skin color still plays a big role in society today. Whether it be to help or hurt you, it still matters. Maybe one day, it won't...

Glennda Lyles said...

Glennda Lyles

I found Gladwell's discussion about race discrimination among slaves very interesting. The issue of light skin vs dark/brown skin has been a problematic issue in minority groups for years. Gladwell reminds us how race discrimination within the African American race dates back to slavery. He suggests that during slavery lighter skinned slaves were at a better advantage than dark skinned slaves and received better treatment. He also points out that lighter skinned individuals are sometimes subjected to more benefits. This concept is true in some ways and still manages to prevail today. I find it interesting that a mindset that started hundreds of years ago can still manage to thrive within our society. Issues of lightness of skin tone and texture of hair have always been discriminatory factors within our race. In many cases these factors have been used to divide and discriminate against each other. The "light skin is better" mindset has managed to pass down from generation to generation and it has crossed cultures. It all seems crazy when you think about it, but it does exist. This issue does not only apply to blacks but its has been noted in Hispanic and Indian cultures as well. Race discrimination has been an appalling problem in this world for years. It is one thing for minority groups to have to deal with race discrimination from other race groups but to continue to discriminate within our own race in the year 2009 is another.

In this chapter, Gladwell reminds us of how race can play a major role in our lives. However, we need to stop letting a factor as small as race and what we look like control us. I believe that race relations in our country have drastically improved. We have been blessed not have to deal with some of the issues our ancestors dealt with in the past but there is still much to be done and the "light skin/ dark skin problem" is one that needs to be put to rest.

Lauren Leohner said...

Not just in Jamaica or in the U.S., but in also South Korea (which is where my mother is from) the color of skin is also concern. The lightness factor has to do with purity and class. All of the celebrities have a very light or creamy tone to their skin. The public strives for this skin complexion. There are also S.Koreans that have a darker skin tone, and people with darker skin are considered to be of the working class. So skin color seems to be an issue of aesthetic nearly all over world.
Also in S.Korea there has been an uprising concerning the "purity" of the Korean people. So far, in the past ten years Korea has received a mass amount of foreign immigration from the U.S., Europeans, and the Middle East. Older Koreans have a fear of cultural mixing and chastised women and men whom associated either through friendship or marriage to these other non-S.Koreans. They feel that their people are betraying their country by marrying foreigners. This is obviously a concern for me since my mother married an American. I find it interesting that every country deals with its own types of racism which backlashes onto society.

TaNeal Walls said...

The bitter truth is that racism still exsists, and most likely always will. Like Gladwell, I agree that the life of a lighter skinned African American tremendously differs than that of a darker skinned African American. In my experiences lighter toned individuals get more respect and honor from other races. Why is this? I cannot vouch for, no one can. But it all goes back to racism. Automatically the white man gets a higher rank, so why wouldn't the lighter skinned person? Seems simple to me, yet still unjust. I think these discrimations will remain an issue. But how you choose to view each individual is up to you.

Unknown said...

I am of the lighter skin tone and I find myself and friends joking about the issue. We can constantly describe each other based on whether would be house of field slaves. we all know that it is not funny. This light vs. dark skin issue has plagued our society for a very long time. This issues does date back but continues in the future today. There are many people who only date or like on of each color.
This has been a growing issue in society. Spike Lee has a movie about this very issue called School Daze. It deals with light vs. dark. On most talk shows that have people who bleach theiir skin on the show are dark skin. I do think that why our society concentrates on this issue, there are many more that are more important. Where are the majority of most african american young males... prison. What race seem to be diagnosed with HIV the most these days.... Young african american women. What is the unemployment rate of african americans during this recession.. almost 15%. I feel these are more important issues than light vs. dark skin.

Clifford Rush III said...

Clifford Rush III,

Lighter skin tones have an advantage? It is a interesting point the author brought up. As mentioned by several others, several organizations are brought up to be primarily black or white or etc. This can also be observed in Cougar Village. Has anyone else noticed the 400 and 500 side segregation? The bus stops even say it. The majority of the 400 side are whites. Indian community also seems to live off campus. It is strange to see how their is a type of segregation on campus even in living arrangements.

Many of said it and I will say it again, we need to not notice focus so much on race/skin tone! This should not be the determining factor, we should look at the person as a whole and stop being so prejudice.

When I first read the chapter, what came to my mind was quite funny. As white Americans, we want to be tan/darker. Other races want to be lighter. Although, you can still tell what race the person is most of the time. Tan white people or diluted races(I am Vietnamese, vaguely Asian looking). We will eventually merge to universal skin tone! A comedian(Russell Peters)said we will all be beige!

Clifford Rush III

Roanda Maldonado said...

Not coming from African American Ancestry, its really hard for me to relate to this light skin and dark skin relationship. I feel that back in the slavery days, there was a thick line between light skin and dark skin African Americans, but in our days, i feel like black is black whether your light or dark. I feel that racism that exists now affects every type of minority. I feel that if a person is rasict in our century, they are ethnocentric and therefore every other culture or race is inferior. I feel like that's the biggest issue concerning racism in 2009.

Abagial Thompson said...

As a light skinned individual, I have experienced what Gladwell discessed when he said that people of a lighter tone recieved better treatment than a darker toned person, such as a Jamaican. Attending a high school that was made up of mainly white students, I recieved better treatment and less discrimination than the fully black, dark complected boy at my school.I was accepted more amongst the white crowd,and was considered "prettier" than darker complected girls simply because of my complexion. Is this right? Not by any means, but it is a true matter at hand.
This all truly does trace back to days of slavery when light skinned slaves were allowed to work in the master's house, while the dark skinned slaves had to slave and toil in the hot blazing sun of the fields...all because of skin color.
In response to Dominic's response, I do believe that race should have nothing to do with how you view an individual. Sadly though it does. To follow up on what professor Rambsy said, I do agree that there are already many white groups, and that black groups are scarce and overlooked when it comes to funding and respect. If skin color wasn't such a heavy factor when judging someone, maybe all of these problems such as racism or discrimination would be alleviated.

Anonymous said...

Teresa G. -The part that stood out to me the most about Gladwell's epilogue, was the mother's disownment of her own daughter based on skin color in order to win the attention of a fair-skinned gentleman. Its interesting how he twisted the misery of the mistresses to a successful outcome for the offspring.

"Colorism" is very prevalent in our society. If we take a look at the black stars who have been deemed sexy or desirable by the dominant population, most have fair skin (at least after airbrushin), Halle Berry, Beyonce to name a couple. It has taken a long time for young dark-skinned girls to feel attractive because of media images.

At the heart of the society in Jamaica, although predominantly black, the people still searced for a reason to discriminate against a different group.

I agree with most of the comments that racism stemmed from slavery, but I also believe that black Americans have a tendency to emphasize slavery as opposed to African Heritage. Every February, we learn about the slave trade and the lynchings and underground railroad. While those are important to understand, it is also imperative to uplift the minds of blacks in America with an explanation of the empires and civilizations that existed before the slave trade. Black Americans, especially at the university setting, need to feel that they are capable of doing what other races have done. To be independent and control their destinies.

In response to Dominic's comment, I believe that although some blacks may say that they voted for Obama because he is black, it goes beyond color and stretches to a feeling of control and having the country view black people as competent, intelligent leaders as opposed to the negative portrayals so often seen in the media.

Tiffany J said...

I totally agree on Gladwell's point of view in terms of treatment towards light or dark skin tones. My brother and I are from the same parents whose skin tone is in the middle(carmel). However, I am what they call "light skinned" and my brother is "dark skinned". We grew up as military kids..."army brats". Throughout our lives, we have experienced various diverse cultures in our schools and our communities. We both were very respectful to all (not seeing color as an issue), but were not always given that degree of respect back due to the color of our skin.
Our parents never instilled in us to hate or disrespect due to anyone's outward appearance or deformality so when racism did step in our path it was shocking. Don't get me wrong, we knew it was out there, but as children thinking "as long as we are good respectful kids, we would be alright", we just didn't think it would cross our paths.
To say the least I feel African Americans should continue to hold their heads up high and keep the mentality of success. Do not expect a hand out, and don't just live your life for today...plan ahead so that your future will be even greater!

Unknown said...

Erik Sanders

I think that throughout history "mulattos" have received many more privileges than those with a darker complexion. From colonial America, to Brazil, and as Gladwell points out Jamaica, those that had "a little bit of whiteness" had certain advantages.

I think one issue that minority groups should consider when looking for hidden advantages or subjective opportunities is discrimination. I would be very interested to see how money for general scholarships like the Cougar Scholarship is distributed campus wide. If there is some sort of hidden agenda or subconscious influence in fund distribution then I feel some groups may be unfairly discriminated against. Also, the same thing can be looked at for university jobs held by students, internships, or any other position that students compete for. I think it will be difficult to put away the notion of race completely, but I feel that if people can refrain from using it as a classificatory mechanism, there will be a greater chance for equal opportunities.

Unknown said...

The topic of black skin vs white skin is always a touchy subject. I know I personally feel it is what people do and present themselves that truly defines them rather than what they look like. It is very easy for people to stick to what they know by hiring or becoming friends with people of their own color, but I think it should be more about values, beliefs, and character. I choose the people I associate with because I can relate to them on an intellectual level not by the color of their skin. I think that as you walk around campus you see more people hanging out with people of their own race simply because they share the same values and beliefs. I don’t think that people choose friends simply because of race. I do think that sometimes people don’t give other people from other races the opportunity to find out if they are compatible. This is sad because you could be missing a truly great person.
I can understand where Gladwell is coming from with the tones of skin with greater opportunity. I can see how lighter skin can help people when they are dealing with racist people. I hope that the majority of people really don’t care the color of people’s skin. What I care about is how are they dressed? This shows if they care about how they present themselves and will respect the job they are applying for. How do they speak? I think that it is important to be able to speak clearly and act educated. It is important to be able to relay the confidence you have in yourself. I want to know what this person values. Do they believe in treating people with respect? Do they appreciate humor? Are they trustworthy?
I know that I choose people based on the characteristic provided. I really don’t care if they are white, black, blue or green. It simply should be out of the equation. It isn’t necessary when judging values of people because after you talk, you will know if this is someone you want to associate with.
Adam Schneider

Ian Caveny said...

Something highly notable about what Mr. Gladwell posted was that he revealed the universal theme of racism. Racism is not just white people and black people, not just this ethnic group vs. that ethnic group; Racism is also amongst its own group.

Many times we do not see this. There are times in which one is ashamed of one's own race (or group). I personally have heard of the things that white people have done and have burned at the ears. But it isn't just race, it's also other groups. It is the same with others.

In this case we see a severe example of a Jamaican woman embarrassed of her own heritage.

The root of racism is us being uncomfortable with how we are made. This is seen even with all of the botox and other "hey! look like me!" things in our country.

You have to know who you are individually. I know that I did not do what the white man years ago did, but I do know that I, like nearly everyone else, no matter their color, tend to make prejudicial decisions. We look and see, and we might do this or this based on color, or piercings, or tattoos, or conversation, or social clique, &c.

But everyone is a person. Each of us is a person individually, and each of us is beautiful in the eyes of the One who made us.