Black man in frenzied knife attack!
Muslim extremist strike again!
When you consider such headlines, the question we must ask is, what value does ethnic profiling the perpetrator have? Why does the race, faith heritage or the ethnicity of the ‘madman’ need to be amplified in contemporary news reporting? It is a phenomenon we have seen rapidly grow with the arrival of 24/hr news and social media, and it is decimating the identity of countless young minds. However, the fact that we the people are the ones that can give the ‘likes and shares, should give u all something to think about. As the ‘othering’ pursued by the lovers of hate seems to be driven by the likes and shares that keeps the vicious circle going, and that means we have a role to play in making a change.
There is as such a structural ‘otherism’, the idea of the ‘non-white’ and typically ‘non-Christian’ being an inferior profile of person, and this in of itself is a reflection of their actions and a proof of their inferiority. If one considers how typically we learn of the disturbed seeking to take the lives of their fellow man, we will find if they are from this ‘other’ profile, the primary dialogue will surround what makes them ‘non-white’ and ‘non-Christian’. In a time where we are finally recognising the impact of the injustice of slavery and the further injustice of honouring its leaders through our civil infrastructure with commemorative statutes, we have to look at this issue. We have to recognise that the impact of amplifying the race and religious heritage of the perpetrators of violence has a massive impact on people who are free of the crimes in question but feel the negative consequences of being linked to it.
Without going into a discussion of how this is clearly evidenced in the massive rise of hate crime against Muslim communities in the UK and USA. We have to recognise that we, the people, have to reject the narrative of hate that is consistently pushed upon us. We need to reflect on how in this last year, Covid-19 has allowed us to see the value we can all bring to each other’s lives as humanity. We have to recognise that more than 90% of the clinicians that died in the NHS trying to save the lives of the people of Britain were Muslim. They never asked the race, religion, ethnicity of who they would treat, they just did it, and gave their lives doing it. We have never thought to question why since the The Race Disparity Audit of 2017, despite learning that ethnic minority groups are the most likely to be victims of crime, we have seen no direct efforts to correct that. In the US, Gabriel Schwartz and Jaquelyn Jahn at Harvard compared police killings in different regions between 2013-2017 and found the US Police kill up to 6 times more black people than white people, and it is simply accepted. This must change. ‘Othering’ doesn’t make headlines alone, it takes lives. It’s a simple fact. Katie Hopkins isn’t an entertainer, journalist or anything so civic; she is a profiteer of hate. Fox news is not just a mouthpiece for Trumpism, it is a propaganda machine of White Christian superiority that runs through the bible belt in the US.
We have to recognise we live in a time where our cell phones have given us the power to be lobbyists, news channels, and ultimately agents for change. The Facebook boycott last year of some of the major global brands from to Unilever to North Face is a testimony of how consumer power can guide brands to force change in society. We are an on the cusp of something, but only we can determine how the rest of the story will continue. The decisions we make on the bias of the stories presented to us, will determine if those stories are changed.
Ultimately, we have to ask ourselves why did we not see the faith of the Reading attacker amplified? Why do not hear about the religious community the terrorist that struck the Poway synagogue comes from presented to us at the primary profile? Why is the white Christian terrorist always the ‘loaner’ or unfortunately ‘having a bad day’, and yet any madman out of that profile, is the evil, ethnic, Muslim, black, etc terrorist? The simple answer is, that the attacker or terrorist is responsible in of themselves. That is, it. This is why it makes no sense for me to hold the Christian community of Reading for example, responsible for the actions of a knifeman in a city park? His Christianity is free from his actions, regardless if he recently accepted this religion as his own.
We have to make change. We have to accept bad people do bad things. They know no race, colour, religion, they just know evil. And we have to reject the effort that is made to always profile the non-white, non-Christian, as it literally is destroying the lives of millions of people across the world and taking the lives of far too many. I am not white, and I am not Christian, but I take a lesson from this quote from the bible and remind all those who are: