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Lois M. Collins: Unfortunately, racism is still very much among us

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  • Gildas LOGAN, UT
    May 27, 2013 11:48 a.m.

    There is something to be said on both sides of the issue. The British emigrants to Utah brought with them some of their fair-minded tradition in most cases, and but some of the pioneers also came from lands with strong racist cultures which have not wholly been lost. The same must to some extent be true, I would think, of lds converts from southern parts of America differing in their views from Yankees.

  • joseywales Park City, UT
    April 25, 2013 3:44 p.m.

    Bill Cosby said it best when he said that until blacks (his term) start respecting themselves enough to quit calling themselves the Nword and young women b-word along with the term "ho" especially by those entertainers who young blacks look up to, then how can they expect others to do the same? It's the same for anyone of a minority, whether it be race, religion, sex whatever, you can't have it both ways, you can't treat those within your group one way, and expect others not to do the same. That's hypocrisy!

  • foghorn Orem, UT
    April 25, 2013 7:46 a.m.

    @atl134
    "But when it comes to the statement "racism is still among us," any honest assessment will conclude the bitterest, most hateful, most dangerous, and most ignored is with the Black population of this country. "

    "Any honest assessment would conclude that you clearly have racial issues of your own."

    When you have the high level of death and assassination threats against a presidential candidate, without any alarm being sounded, that's dangerous and ignored racism. Just an observation,not a "racial issue."

  • samhill Salt Lake City, UT
    April 24, 2013 6:52 p.m.

    "Unfortunately, racism is still very much among us"

    I couldn't agree more.

    Even more unfortunately, it's continued to be deeply ingrained, even institutionalized.

    If you wonder what I mean by that, just recall the prominent and shameless categorization by racial characteristics compiled on every job application you fill and, even more flagrantly, by any census form you've filled out. And all of this as a matter of **law** as required by the Federal government. You can't get any more institutional that that.

  • PGVikingDad Pleasant Grove, UT
    April 24, 2013 4:54 p.m.

    Lois, I think you and your husband have suffered true instances of racism and bigotry. But I also think you may have also found offense when racism may have had nothing to do with it. As a white male, I've been intensely scrutinized when found walking the streets (innocently) at three in the morning. Yes, on multiple occasions. I've even been harshly interviewed by a state trooper in the middle of the night because I "fit the description" of a recent suspect (I'm 6'7" and 300 pounds, which seems an uncommon description, at best.) And I've witnessed medical-staff lectures on the evils of smoking when a non-smoking relative had lung trouble. The simple fact of the matter is that alcohol abuse is the #1 cause of liver disease, *even among non-Indians*. So...racism? Maybe. But also maybe not.

  • Chris B Salt Lake City, UT
    April 24, 2013 4:22 p.m.

    Yes it is prevalent.

    Just look at affirmative action.

    If a white person and a black person are all things considered the same other than race, its against the law to deny the black person admittance to college or a job due to his race and instead give it to the white man, but its perfectly acceptable to some people to deny the white person and give it to the black man due to the fact the black man is black.

    If thats not racism I dont know what is

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    April 24, 2013 1:15 p.m.

    @foghorn
    "But when it comes to the statement "racism is still among us," any honest assessment will conclude the bitterest, most hateful, most dangerous, and most ignored is with the Black population of this country. "

    Any honest assessment would conclude that you clearly have racial issues of your own.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 24, 2013 7:38 a.m.

    Re: "How come it's always a bunch of white conservatives who are the 1st to say it doesn't exist?"

    And, how come it's always a bunch of white liberals who are the first to say it does?

  • Frankness TALLAHASSEE, FL
    April 23, 2013 9:54 p.m.

    This was an interesting article Mrs Loie. I just think that we're heading into a world where it's going to matter far more what we're doing and what people around us are doing than will matter what folks tell us they think or tell us they believe, skin color., politics, etc...

    I had someone once say, "yea you're pretty sensitive,'" but when roles reverse this same individual begins measuring with a ruler all the wrongs and filing away YOMs, but also rudeness is on the upward trend.

    I can't spend too much time agonizing, so Ive established a few "happy" places I can retreat to where noone can bother.

  • UtahBlueDevil Durham, NC
    April 23, 2013 4:53 p.m.

    I find comments like these from people who largely live in a homogenous society just kind of funny. Yes, Utah was a slave state, but it never practiced it, and there aren't people who live in Utah who can remember being raised in segregated schools... or told to sit in the back of a bus, or were ineligible for a job because of race.

    Meanwhile, in the rest of the country, and large parts of the world, these types of things are not just faint memories found only in history books. You don't have to go far to find racially divided neighborhoods, or churches.

    "How come it's always a bunch of white conservatives who are the 1st to say it doesn't exist? and then blame the victim?"

    Exactly! Never have they walked a day in those they criticize shoes - but they are sure experts on the state of racism. The one positive is this also means it is not part of their lives. There are plenty of racist of all political leanings.

    To pretend the real problem is that the issue has been politicized... good grief.....it shows their world is just a tad bit isolated.

  • Truthseeker SLO, CA
    April 23, 2013 4:18 p.m.

    Thank you Lois for sharing those experiences with us. "42" was a powerful movie.

    Racism is alive and well and we must continue to raise awareness and fight against it.

    I was shocked to learn just a few weeks ago that there are still racially segregated proms in Georgia.

    Re:foghorn
    Prof Gates was a distinguished, educated, older man (and a personal acquaintance/friend of Pres. Obama), unarmed and arrested at his own home, so yeah, the police looked stupid. Considering the abuses by law enforcement and the lack of trust which has built up, it doesn't surprise me that a majority of African Americans thought OJ was innocent.

    There is ample research which shows racism is still a prevalent problem in our society. Though it is true racism exist among people of differening ethnicities, by far non-whites are more often the victims in our society.

    I believe some attacks against Obama had roots in racism-- for example, birtherism. Few Republican leaders denounced those who claimed Obama was not an American citizen.

    Not a fan of Jesse Jackson or Al Sharpton, but to believe that racism exists due to their efforts is utter nonsense.

  • 4word thinker Murray, UT
    April 23, 2013 4:07 p.m.

    So if saying 'Chicago' is code for racism against African-Americans, is saying 'Salt Lake City' code for anti-Mormon?

    Procura tells about the ignoramuses, and they are way too numerous. They may target a race, or they may target a more PC group, like people who are fat, or short, or teens, or a religious group. These people say outrageous things and enjoy it.

    But when the list gets so long that we cannot even address normal societal issues, like poverty, gun violence, or the names of certain cities, without being called racist, the problems are deep and complex and go beyond a few ignoramuses.

    I would suggest that there are minority groups who are very racist. The Jeremiah Wright hate speech in his church was appalling, yet the press just said whites would be surprised at what was said in many black churches in America. Yes I was surprised, and insulted. Ignoramuses come in many colors.

    As far a OJ, the numbers are telling, but more alarming were all those who were of his race, who thought he was guilty, and were glad he got away with it. That is hate!

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    April 23, 2013 4:00 p.m.

    How come it's always a bunch of white conservatives who are the 1st to say it doesn't exist? and then blame the victim?

    Plenty of racist still alive and well.

    And while I agree, it can be interjected into politics, talking about it doesn't add to the problem.
    Having friends of different races, you hear a lot of under their breath comments from the aggressively stupid, who don't realize that I'm with that "insert racist ignorance here" person.

    Some posters, should understand very well, the real problem of racism existing, yet they act like it doesn't. What do good folks have to say about it, over at Hayden Lake?

  • skiwampis Sierra Vista, AZ
    April 23, 2013 3:40 p.m.

    A septuaginarian white lady in my town was diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver, having never sipped a drop of alcohol in her life. The doctor concluded, in hearing distance of her husband, that alcohol was obviously to blame.

    I went to a reservation school where 99%+ of the enrollment was Indian. I received my fair shar of mistreatment and bullying, specifically because of my race.

    I don't let that fact define me or the kids I went to school with. I choose to remember the overwhelming amount of kindness shown toward me at that school. I choose not to live my life allowing myself or others to feel sorry for me, for any reason.

    I believe that articles like this fan the flames of division and and anger in this country, because it gives the Al Sharptons of the world continued justification for existence. I choose not to live in the past and I choose not to let a few juvenile minds dictate my life. I invite Mrs. Collins and anyone else with a simliar paradigm to do the same.

  • Happy Valley Heretic Orem, UT
    April 23, 2013 3:09 p.m.

    How come it's always a bunch of white conservatives who are the 1st to say it doesn't exist? and then blame the victim?

    Plenty of racist still alive and well.

    And while I agree, it can be interjected into politics, talking about it doesn't add to the problem.
    Having friends of different races, you hear a lot of under their breath comments from the aggressively stupid, who don't realize that I'm with that "insert racist ignorance here" person.

    Mntman, you of all people, should understand very well, the real problem of racism existing, yet you act like it doesn't.
    What do your neighbors have to say about it, over at Hayden Lake?

  • estreetshuffle Window Rock, AZ
    April 23, 2013 3:00 p.m.

    The movie "Stand and Deliver" Edward James Olmos and Lou Diamond Phillips" states that Math and Calculus are the great equilizers". That movie is about racism. If you want to see racism in action, live in border towns to Native American reservations. Don't see so much in mixing pot cities (ie NY); however, in the west and midwest it is more prevelant (you know the "good ol boy network" types in country and western towns. Unfortunately, I've seen it in churches not only LDS but other churches as well. I talked with an Iroquois gentleman in Flag Az. He mentioned that native americans teach their children to have no ego because it creates fear and fear creates prejudice. I've noticed that many native americans are so welcoming of others; something we could all learn.

  • Anonyme Orem, UT
    April 23, 2013 2:29 p.m.

    Thank you, Lois Collins, for a thoughtful and well written story.

  • foghorn Orem, UT
    April 23, 2013 1:33 p.m.

    Rude comments will always be with us, whether you're fat or thin, tall or short, blond or red haired, white or black or red I know. I am a redhead (kick a ginger day????), and a Brazilian living in America! But when it comes to the statement "racism is still among us," any honest assessment will conclude the bitterest, most hateful, most dangerous, and most ignored is with the Black population of this country. Check out the OJ Simpson trial (72% of Whites thought he was guilty, while 71% of Blacks thought he was innocent), Obama's treatment of the Harvard Professor Harry Gates incident (he said the police were stupid), Internet death threat messages just before the election when it appeared possible that Mitt Romney could win (NOTE: not a single media article expressing astonishment or outrage). Blame Black leaders like Al Sharpton etal, AND the media. Collins' article only adds to the problem.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    April 23, 2013 11:35 a.m.

    Yes it's still exists largely because it continues to be injected into society so people like Al Sharpton, Jesse Jackson and Mark Potok can still have jobs. These guys put racism out there so they can garner sympathy for themselves and retain that illusion of credibility that they have in society. In Heaven, these guys would still claim that racism exists.

  • procuradorfiscal Tooele, UT
    April 23, 2013 10:29 a.m.

    Re: "Racism is a political word hurled far too frequently in America."

    Agreed.

    I'm betting the incompetent, inconsiderate, ignoramuses mentioned in the article were prone to similar behavior toward persons of all races.

    They're ignoramuses. That's what ignoramuses do. It's unhelpful to identify an ignoramus as a racist, though, when his real problem is much broader -- boorishness.

    Even in the unlikely event he develops sufficient self-awareness to address his racism, he'll just transfer his asinine animus to another equally-undeserving, but more politically-correct target.

    Thankfully, racism is uncommon in modern America. Boorishness, however, is on the rise, encouraged by liberal academe, government, and entertainment media.

    Liberal boors are made to feel righteous, superior, empowered to offer uninvited, uninformed, and unhelpful criticism of anything liberal dogma disapproves.

    Don't like a parenting style? Horn in and correct it.

    Don't like someone's smoking? Call him out, even if you're not affected.

    Differ with someone's choice of food, appearance, fashion or avocation? Poke fun and shun.

    Hear a perfectly valid conservative opinion on an issue? Ridicule it.

  • Mountanman Hayden, ID
    April 23, 2013 8:37 a.m.

    Yes, there will always be racists on the earth. But guess what, racism is frequently used as a political tool to advance certain political agendas. For example; if you disagree with a person considered to be a part of the minority are you therefore a "racist"? Wasn't that word used to excoriate Mitt Romney in the last election and who was it that used that word and why was it used? Racism is a political word hurled far too frequently in America. The consequences of misuse of that word is divisiveness and ignorance and it blinds people to real racism.