California State University, San Bernardino

Inferential racism is wrong

One social element I will never tolerate is racism. Racism of any kind is wrong. The amount of inferential racism that pops up in everyday conversations is mind-boggling.

Inferential racism is subtle racism, one who makes lighthearted jokes about race, along with accepting racial stereotypes. This type of racism pops up everywhere, I hear it in the community, through media, and occasionally within my own inner circle.

As a college graduate, with a degree in Mass Communication-Media Studies, I have had the opportunity to examine and analyze various types of race and racial ideologies from cultures around the world, media propaganda, interpersonal interactions, along with race and racism history courses. Through my studies, I have found their to be an abundance of inferential racism used in so many people’s everyday conversations. Inferential racism is passed down, it is taught, and it is wrong.

Last week a group of my friends and I had a fun night out; to which I encountered an inferential racist joke towards black people. So, my friend is Mexican and white, his girlfriend is black and Filipino. Throughout dinner they kept saying underhanded racist jokes. I was taken back by it, mainly because I thought we were all grown mature adults at this point.

I looked at my friend’s girlfriend after she said the joke and I told her, “I never know whether to pretend the joke is funny or be offended for those you’re talking about.”

She tried to justify her act by saying, “Oh, it’s okay, I’m part black.”

First off, it doesn’t matter what race you are, racist comments towards any race or culture, including your own, is classified as racism. Society tends to feel that as long as their racist comments aren’t overt, derogatory, or explicit, that they are okay to use.

It’s never okay to even subtly degrade, make lighthearted jokes, assumptions, or abide by false stereotypical ideologies that society places on all races. Inferential racism is not okay; you never know who is going to be offended and those who use it sound nothing less than stupid.