I grew up not even realizing that racism existed until I reached an age of about 12. Primarily because my parents did not speak of it and were not bigoted or judgmental in actions or words, and the primary school that I attended in a very affluent area had very few black students and they were immensely popular. When I became aware of the concept, it was mind blowing to me. Even as I have aged, the concept is still mind blowing to me. Sexism in comparison is easily understandable. Considering that men and women are wired very differently, have different goals and objectives, are physically very different and even think differently it can actually make sense. It doesnt make it right, but it can make sense why there would be sexism. Racism, however, does not make sense. I share more defining characteristics with a black female than I do with a white male. Race is very superficial and skin color really determines no other inner characteristic. Culture is a whole different matter, but it too has very superficial characteristics. Meaning, that same being could be raised in varying cultures, and it is just the society, culture and or religion that has placed a wash of characteristics on the being. It is definitely nurture over nature. Considering racism today, I asked myself how it could be possible for one human being to hate millions of other human beings based on something as superficial as skin color. And my answer was: Its not. Its not possible to hate or even dislike millions of people youve never met. Racism is nothing more than a projection of self-hate. Dislike or even hate for oneself is a very difficult thing to deal with. Rare are the people who have this negative self image and actually own it and recognize it consciously. Those who do so can be recognized by their consciously self destructive actions (for example: cutting). Since the hate or negative feelings towards oneself are so very difficult to deal with, they are pushed back to the subconscious and from there projected onto an infinitely more satisfying and safe target: the Other. It allows one with a negative self image to disown the feelings and place them somewhere easier to deal with. It also allows for a great deal of subconscious justification and rationalization. Why does my life suck? Its because of the Other. The Other is the reason for my dissatisfaction. Think about it; how many happy racists are there? The few Ive met were very unsatisfied and unhappy with their lives and showed it in words and actions. Now conversely, how many truly happy people are racist? None. Love for oneself transfers easily intro love for all others. Indeed, it is the same thing. There are exceptions under this premise For example, there are people who were taught to be racist by their parents and upbringing, we see this with some of the older generation. Some of them come out of it by their own growth, but even those who dont, their racism is a thin veneer of nurture and does not carry with it the burden of the hate or dislike. Its also something that can be easily overturned by the right experience and by gaining knowledge and awareness. Conversely, the hard core racist will probably never change their beliefs and it would be almost impossible. For to do so would involve a very uncomfortable amount of self reflection True racists should be contained but treated gently. Think of them as abused children who lash out. Can they be dangerous? Certainly, but they do deserve a fair amount of pity.