Editor: State Senator Sylvia Allen, LaJuana Gillette (who serves on the Mohave County Planning and Zoning Commission) and President Trump have all been called out recently for “racist” remarks. This is a reoccurring issue, exploited for political purpose to the point that the word “racist” has lost clear meaning.
In reality, everyone is racist. Biologically people are wired to react to differences in people’s skin color and the features. Stereotypes formulated through personal and indirect (e.g. the internet) experiences help us quickly organize and act on the information we glean about the environment and people around us. In uncomfortable or fearful situations this helps keep us safe.
So language reinforcing negative stereotypes and stoking fears about different people without good cause is irresponsible and should be called out. Publicly denigrating the “browning of America” as a threat to our “white, Christian nation” not only irresponsible, it's ludicrous.
America’s first centralized government was set up by white, male landowners. But even then our vast nation-to-be was populated by many kinds of people. In the southwest, already rich in Native American cultures, the first European colonization was by the Spaniards (i.e. Hispanics), and this part of the country has, more or less remained Hispanic. So I find the idea that the “browning of America” is a threat to be particularly laughable.
Each of us holds stereotypes that influence our words and actions.
Those with more access to influence public policy and opinion have a responsibility to put aside their personal prejudices before acting or speaking as public servants. The strength of our people — no matter race or ancestry — and of our nation lies in our unity as one people.
Lake Havasu City