Top 17 things that don’t sound racist, but are anyway

Ah this good old racism which clings to our sides like nothing. We may be citizens of the world, hate Zemmour, have listened to Tryo and wear wide pants, racist scents continue to emanate in our daily lives without us necessarily realizing it. The racist, insidious mechanism has a long arm. If you think you are not racist but you recognize yourself in some of these points, ALEEEEERTE.

In recent days we can see the documentary “Blacks in France” by Alain Mabanckou and Aurelia Perreau, it delivers a set of eloquent testimonies on what it is to be Black today in France. To see urgently !

1. Avoid “all Arab countries” for holidays because of terrorism

Because you can never be too careful. On the other hand, going to the United States, yes with pleasure, here is a welcoming and safe country. Yes, we have a slight tendency to homogenize everything we don’t know well.

2. Finding that ultimately Asian culture isn’t really your thing

The “Asian culture”… So we put China, India, Cambodia, Japan, Russia, etc. in the same bag? We don’t care about Asia so much that we consider that they are above all Chinese and that their culture is the same, the traditions the same, the language the same. In short, to say that we have no affinity with Asian culture is as stupid as to say that Africa is a beautiful country.

3. Say “reu-noi”, “black”, “keu-bla” but never say BLACK

How many linguistic barriers do we put on this taboo word that we refuse to pronounce? Yet we are talking about “whites” and not “white” or “teu-ouaille”. Why does this word bother you? Reflection to continue with this podcast: Black, not black (to listen to on Arte Radio).

4. “Love” traveling in developing countries

They may be poor, but they really have their hearts on their sleeves. You are so happy to be able to travel for a handful of euros in these cheap countries where you can buy cigarettes for less. But be careful, you go there above all for the human encounter.

5. Go live in popular neighborhoods because it’s more… “lively”

But putting her children in a private school, campaigning for the ban on the veil in universities, and paying her cleaning lady black because still, don’t mess around.

6. Talking about “primitive arts” instead of “first arts”

Ouch. “Primitives”? So we’re talking about people who are a little bit boorish and who made snowmen out of mud, a very primitive thing. Obviously, it’s not possible, if the expression of primitive arts has existed for a long time in the history of art, it has finally been replaced by the “primitive arts”, a bit less contemptuous.

7. Considering Samuel L. Jackson was really great in The Matrix

Ouch ouch ouch… Confusing all the blacks, all the Arabs and all the Asians, it is the racist disorder that many try to hide. And a journalist was magnificently illustrated in this shameful mistake (I take this opportunity to refer you to racist TV moments).

8. Depicting white Jesus everywhere, when the guy was not Caucasian

He came from Galilee in the north of Israel guys, where does it come from that we see him everywhere, all the time like a greenhorn? That said, it’s the same for God who is always an old bearded Caucasian (except in Almighty Bruce or God is interpreted by Lawrence Fishburne it’s true, I admit *)

* Uh it’s a valve in relation to the point just before bolloss band.

9. Saying that black people have “very beautiful skin”

Overall, it’s always very weird to specifically praise the beauty of black people and their skin etc. But the people who say it don’t think they’re racist because it’s a positive prejudice (like those who think black people “have rhythm in their skin”, yes yes it’s the same). Unfortunately, it participates in the racist mechanics of obecting black people by glorifying their physique. Just watch the movie get-out to grasp the idea.

Top 17 things that don't sound racist, but are anyway

10. Talking about the “Calais jungle”

We don’t really know how or why this expression became the only expression to talk about the refugee camp in Calais. Here is the definition of a “jungle” according to the Petit Larousse: “In India, a tree plant formation that thrives in a hot and humid climate with a short dry season”. Here.

11. The concept of flesh-colored tights

“Flesh-colored tights, whose flesh is that exactly?” »

Thank you Shirley Souagnon for refocusing the debate.

12. But also bandages…

“Nothing is thought out for us. Neither bandages, nor hairdressers, nor foundation. » It is with these words spoken in 2018 in a program on France 5 that journalist Rokhaya Diallo ignites the web as she puts her finger on a shocking reality despite the general indifference it arouses.

Going back to the documentary “Blacks in France” (quoted in the intro), the young dancer Kathy indeed shows that she has to dye her ballet slippers so that they are the color of her skin.

13. The “world music” department at Fnac

As this article from France Musique explains quite well “Should the term “Music of the world” disappear? », this appellation is somewhat problematic since it categorizes under a simple label everything that we do not know. It’s not rap, it’s not rock, it’s not French song, it’s not r’n’çib? well, it’s “world music”. Yes you see the problem.

14. Touch kinky hair oklm like it’s a slip party

Wouldn’t it occur to you to touch anyone’s hair like that? Well frizzy hair is the same. Especially since these capillary intrusions are often accompanied by embarrassing comments such as “it looks like a sheep”. Thanks but no, no one wants to be likened to a sheep, leave the frizzy hair alone.

I also recommend this article “Are we witnessing the end of the reign of straight hair? (Nylon) which explains, among other things, how curly or frizzy hair has been rejected for racist reasons. Still “In fashion, black models are forced to shave their heads because we don’t know how to take care of their hair. There is still progress to be made” as influencer Kayliah Balou explains in the article.

15. Affirm loud and clear that France is not at all a racist country

A racist country? The expression does not mean much. That’s why we talk about structural or institutional racism. And to say that France is not a racist country is to deny absolutely all the racism that racialized people experience on a daily basis, because as white people we are not confronted with it. So yes it’s a bit racist. And con.

17. Thinking that we are not racist because we often eat kebabs

If only the kebab could have such powers.

Top 17 things that don't sound racist, but are anyway
Picture credits: Topito

Racism is not a simple thing that can be solved with a spoon and many of us think of ourselves as non-racists while participating in a more structural racism, that’s why it’s worth questioning yourself and to learn more and more about this subject, I can only recommend the public utility podcast “Kiffe ta race” by Rokhaya Diallo and Grace Ly, who tackle themes related to racism without any taboos.

Also to listen to: “Crépue, between racism and self-acceptance” (Les Pieds sur Terre)

To read also: White fragility, by Robin DiAngelo which shows why it is so difficult to talk about racism when you are white. A dangerous denial that must be fought in the same way as more frontal forms of racism.

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