It would be prudent for anyone to believe that dormant racism was ever a solution for the United States. Not that this ever fully occurred, but upon seeing the aftermath in Charlottesville, it’s also fair to concede that white supremacists who once hid in the shadows now have no restraint in showing their true beliefs.
This is yet another milestone in the shocking-not-surprising tenure of Donald Trump as the leader of this country. While Trump is most certainly racist, he may not be the most overtly racist person to ever be president (looking at you, Andrew Jackson). However, Trump doesn’t care about racism specifically - as a narcissist, he cares only about himself, and dividing America to distract from the Russia investigation grants him more time at the helm.
While this is a huge problem, it’s not permanent. Additionally, impeachment won’t automatically heal the persistent hate amongst many. There has to be a more promising long-term solution, and it starts with education.
Unfortunately, education isn’t easy, whether in the classroom or on the street. States, textbook companies and everyone involved have opinions, many of which are for their own gain. If evolution cannot even be a basis for teaching that all humans should be treated humanely, where can you start?
Since it seems that people are glued to media/TV/Internet these days, I considered a debate on the subject of race. “Left vs. Right - a Battle Royale about Racism” could be the billing. Both sides pick their top-10 speakers; each member has a prepared statement and then each have a turn of cross-examination. Maybe we could sprinkle in a few audience questions. And at the end, people vote, just like “American Idol,” which side wins.
Then I realized that playing this game is exactly how we arrived here in the first place. Labeling winners and losers defeats the purpose of eradicating hate about specific types of people. In a general sense, everyone needs to be on the same team, but this isn’t a game.
That’s why I have somewhat mixed emotions about the removal of Confederate statues in various cities around the country. Don’t get me wrong - there is no place glorifying the Confederacy in public spaces. I cannot fathom to understand the fury someone of slave ancestry would have at seeing a giant concrete man continue to gaze over him/her. Keeping them for history’s sake could have some value, but only in the right place, with the right description.
However, this made me think about other statues and depictions of history scattered across the country. Statues and tributes of Christopher Columbus are everywhere, yet he was an evil man. Native Americans surely deserve more recognition in places that they initially called home.
But you know what could go along way to solving racial problems? Talking about Jesus – and the color of his skin. At least in America, most Christians (and “Christians”) see Jesus as fair-skinned, instead of what he surely looked like as a man from the Middle East. I’m sure people will make the “we should be colorblind” argument here, but it’s impossible to ignore pictures, images and statues that are ethnologically incorrect.
By itself, this won’t win over all white supremacists - after all, they hate Jews, and Jesus was Jewish (and they hate poor people, which is another trait shared with Jesus). But this one piece of education could have a profound influence over stopping the indoctrination of Christians to the alt-right.
With the travel ban in limbo and the current status of our country, if given a chance to visit America, what would Jesus do? Trump claimed he could bring peace to the Middle East, but I’d prefer a Middle Eastern man depicted properly to help peace in America prosper.