Discrimination means to differentiate, which could have bad connotations, such as to treat individuals differently in a bad way based on race or sex or nationality or creed or religion or just about anything that comes to mind. For example, blacks have been discriminated against in employment, voting rights, freedom, and many other rights simply based on their color.
However, discrimination has a good side to the coin if it is discerning differences to determine the best of a group of individuals. For example, we discriminate when we compare Albert Einstein to other scientists because Einstein was different and thus we differentiate his abilities from others in a good form of being prejudiced. Einstein should be separated from his contemporaries as being the best.
It is interesting to note that most people who claim that they never discriminate against Native Americans, Japanese, blacks, Jewish, Irish, or whatever group is in the “hot box,” are really discriminating because they have made race an issue. Somebody who truly doesn’t discriminate doesn’t even notice the difference. A man who says that he likes the black race just showed his true allegiance to his race because he didn’t say that he liked all races no matter what. The soldier who goes to war with his brothers in arms from all different races and religions and sees no distinction is the true professional who does not discriminate.
So, is there a problem with the “Black Lives Matter” group? They didn’t say, “All Lives Matter.” Of course, black lives matter, but so do the lives of red, yellow, tan, brown, and white people. Some say that blacks have been mistreated for so many generations that they should have the right to discriminate against others. Well, let’s let the Native Americans have that right first. And how about allowing the Jews to discriminate against Arabs? Where does it stop? We have to say that all lives matter to avoid any continuation of discrimination through “getting even” or revenge motivation.
The discrimination against blacks in the south roots itself deeply in the soil of slavery. I watched many of these whites spew out their hatred, which was very similar to the hatred of the Jewish people by the Germans. If you are down and out, you will look for somebody to make yourself feel or look better. The poor whites in the south didn’t have much in their pockets, but they could always pick on a poor black person to make themselves better than somebody else.
In order to get past the terrible history of murdering blacks and Jews, we need to study our past to make certain that it does not reappear. Rather than tearing down Civil War statues, it would be much more intelligent to examine the history of that war to prevent it from happening again. It would be more important to learn that General Robert E. Lee was not in favor of slavery, but, rather instead, joined the Confederacy because he sided with his state, Virginia, over the union. And when you study the history of General Stonewall Jackson, you learn that he opposed slavery and, in fact, taught blacks in his Sunday School classes. Jackson was another Confederate leader who fought with Virginia rather than against her. For you see, history is extremely important to ensure that we do not make the same mistakes. The mistake made during the Civil War was in not declaring the war was to free slaves and nothing else. State’s rights should never have been an issue. In fact, if slavery had been the only issue for the war, Generals Lee and Jackson would have joined the Union side, and the war would have lasted for less than a year. They were that good!
But emotions pour out when we discuss these issues and mad idiots like Hitler can take over crowds who feed on this adrenaline rush. Tearing down statues usually is only a start. Burning the history books and then other books is an intermediary step. Then it is time to start rounding up the “bad guys and gals,” whoever that might be. Hitler chose the Jews, but the next totalitarian leader may choose to imprison all the middle and upper class. It would be like trying to predict the weather on a date next year. Who knows who will be discriminated against by the totalitarian regime?
And I guess that is my point. Extremists can discriminate against a selected group. And then that group can get back at the world and discriminate against another selected group. It is much like the father who abuses the son, and then the son abuses the grandson. The discrimination perpetuates itself unless we stop and examine the history behind these extreme movements and learn from them so they don’t happen again.