Wednesday, 24 June 2009

References to "Race" Still Ubiquitous in "Post-Racial" America

Is the United States a "post-racial" society? How can we be a "post-racial" society if some or all variations of the words "race" and "racial" and "racist" and "racism" still appear in virtually every story about people with brown skin?

We certainly cannot be "post-racial" if we're still using the word "race" ubiquitously, right? By analogy, we suspect that we may be a post horse and buggy society because the phrase "horse and buggy" has pretty much disappeared from our publications and our daily conversations. But words that are ubiquitous refer to concepts that still occupy our thoughts.

For example, there was a time when "gas lamps" were very common in America and so the phrase "gas lamp" was also very common. Today, it would be hard to find that phrase in a newspaper or blog published now, except with reference to antiquity. There are about 344,000 all-time total hits for the phrase "gas lamp" at Google.

However, if you use the search for terms "Race" "black" and "white" together at Google, (which pretty much excludes articles using the word "race" to refer to a car or bicycle competition), then you will find over 55 Million hits at Google for the word race.

If you narrow your search to just the last year, it won't make much difference. Just for the last twelve months, you still find 23 million hits for the search terms "race" and "black" and "white", even when you exclude articles that have the terms "car" and "bicycle. "

From this, I conclude that we are mostly a post "gas lamp" society but we are still a very much "race"-obsessed society.

This is even more remarkable when you consider that gas lamps did exist and were used in many homes and businesses while "race," as we now know, does not exist as a matter of biology or genetic science and never did.

When a fallacy like "race" gets 55 million hits at google, that's quite an achievement for the propagandists who created the term in the first place.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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