Race and Racism

By Christopher Zoukis

It was Solomon, the favorite son of King David and heir to the throne of Israel, who wrote, “There’s nothing new under the sun.”  And the idea that the white race is superior to the so-called colored races is no exception.  It’s been around a long, long time.  To demonstrate this fact, it is necessary to take a quick look at the idea of ‘race’ and the general history of ‘racism.’  King Solomon / Image courtesy en.wikipedia.org

Race, which is defined as “any of the major biological divisions of mankind, distinguished by color and texture of hair, color of skin and eyes, stature, bodily proportions, etc.:  many ethnologists now consider that there are only three primary divisions, the Caucasian (loosely, white race), Negroid (loosely, black race), and Mongoloid (loosely, yellow race), each with various subdivisions:  the term has acquired so many unscientific connotations that in this sense it is often replaced in scientific usage by ethnic stock or group.”

White was first used in the racial sense, as an adjective, in the year 1604.  Whoever it was that used it, did it like this:  “of those races (chiefly European or of European Extraction) characterized by light complexion.”  Certainly it was used prior to that, but this is the first recorded usage.  And it is assumed that this usage was quite common at that time, which shows how long ‘racism’ has been around.

William Perry, in 1676, distinguished between blacks and whites, calling blacks a totally different and separate species.  Blacks differed from Europeans not only in skin color “but also in natural manners and in the internal qualities of their minds.”  No one challenged Perry’s conclusions.  In fact, Europeans agreed.  There was nothing startling about these remarks.  It was common knowledge.  In other words, bigotry and hatred were prevalent. 

And of course, no one asked the blacks what they thought about it. 

Then in 1708, William Tyson, who was a physical anatomist, discovered the evolutionary missing link.  He determined, scientifically of course, that it was the African Pygmy.  Whom Tyson called “wholly a brute,” halfway between an ape and a man. 

Ninety-one years later, in the year 1799, a medical doctor from Great Britain validated the superiority of whites.  His name was Charles White.  Dr. White published a profusely illustrated book in which he certified, without qualm and with meticulous decisiveness, that the white race is exalted over those of color.  Mostly, his proof consisted of pointing out the cosmetic refinement of white faces – their “rosy cheeks and coral lips.”  Again, no one argued with the incredible virtuosity of the doctor’s genius.  But it was nice to know that an expert confirmed what everyone already knew.

Following in Charles White’s ‘scientific’ footsteps was Robert Knox.  Knox, in his book The Races of Man declared it perfectly acceptable for whites to wipe out whole populations of blacks.  Because “the texture” of the black “brain is, I think, generally darker.”  And because there is “a physical and consequently, a psychological inferiority in the dark races generally.” 

Essentially, by dint of abstract reasoning, Knox arrived at these exaggerated, quaint and absurd conclusions.  Conclusions which Knox believed supported genocide.

Knox’s conclusions were supported by A.R. Wallace, the codiscoverer of the theory of evolution.  Put simply, Wallace explained that extermination of the colored races was nothing more than natural selection at work.  In other words, racial eradication was a self-acting, scientific law, nothing to be concerned about.  This was how the world worked.

Frederick Farrar took the idea of extermination even further, if possible.  Farrar divided the races of mankind into three distinct groups:  “savage, semi-civilized and civilized.”  And of all the races on the face of the earth, the Aryan and the Semitic were the only examples of civilized races.  There was only one semi-civilized race:  the Chinese, who, admittedly, were sliding down the slippery slope toward savage.  All other races were savage, and “irreclaimable,” because despite the whites’ superhuman efforts, the savage races were beyond hope.  They were “doomed.” 

Paul Rohrbach summed up the white man’s attitude toward the “rising tide of color” in his 1912 best-selling book German Thought in the World.  “Not until the native learns to produce anything of value in the service of the higher race, i.e., in the service of its and his own progress, does he gain any moral right to exist.”  Translation:  it is morally proper to wipe out the colored races.  Paul Rohrbach / Photo courtesy www.historisches-lexikon-bayerns.de

What none of these esteemed white men bothered to mention, as they set forth their logical and scientific excuses for genocide, was the real reason for such European posturing:  real estate.  They wanted what the blacks had, land and natural resources.  In the end, then, the racism of some boiled down to money.  Others truly believed the colored races were of lesser value than whites. 

Which just goes to show you how stupid, bigoted, and uninformed soi-disant 'intelligent individuals' can be.