Saturday, February 28, 2015

Guide in Dealing with Racism

- Glaiza Anne S. Wood,    Jan 2, 2015

Racism is defined as a discrimination and prejudice based on a person’s race. It is a very common and very real social problem in our world today. It can be very difficult to deal with. People are so floored by racist slurs that they do not know what to do. As a result, they end up responding negatively causing further problems. Below are a few tips that will help in dealing with racism.
For those who haven’t directly experienced a racist attack, advice such as respecting yourself may seem futile. But, those who have landed in the thick of racially charge situations understand the need for self respect. It always goes that you cannot expect others to respect you if you don’t respect yourself. Get rid of that colonial mentality and really believe that you are as good as anybody else – regardless of the color of their skin. Once you have established inner strength, dealing with racism gets easier. You can now stand up against racial slurs and recognize it as a result of ignorance, instead of a direct attack to your person.
Assert you rights. Assert you position. Let people know that you deserve to be where you are and that you are equals. Gently (but firmly) remind them that the color of your skin does not dictate your abilities. Nor does it give them a reason to treat you badly. Keep in mind that being assertive is not the same as being superior or arrogant. Be assertive in things that you deserve. Don’t let it go too far or you’ll find that you are just as bad as the racist who attacked you.
When someone attacks you racially, your first impulse may be to respond with equal negativity. Hold off on that response. Instead try you best to steer the situation positively. Stand your ground and don’t stoop to their level. Do your best to educate your abuser. Inform them that they should look past the color of your skin and focus instead on your abilities. Responding in this manner to a racist act can be very frustrating. You may not be able to see results at the start, but later on you will see positive results.
Tip # 4 - COUNT TO 10
Responding to a racist slur or attack positively may be the right thing to do, but it can be also be very difficult. More than once you will feel the need to shout and get mad. It may seem like the right thing to do at that time, but it’s really not. In these situations, it is best to take a step back and slowly count to ten. Let your self cool down before moving forward. If 1 to 10 isn’t enough, don’t worry you have every number in the universe at your disposal.
With every negative situation, the need to vent is always present. That is why it is necessary and helpful for you to find a support group. Look for fellow Kababayans who are going through the same things that you are. Share your experiences with them and listen to theirs too. Support Groups can help you see that this isn’t happening to you alone. Members may even give you more tips on how to deal with racist attacks.
Sometimes the best way to silence racist attacks is by excelling in what you do. Gain the respect of the people around you and show them that you capable. Show them that you can do your job as well as, if not better than anyone else can. Flaunt (through your actions) the fact that you are a skilled individual and that you help make the organization better.
Tip # 7 – REPORT IT
No matter how positive you are or how you are in your job, there will always be people who just don’t understand. Some of them grew up thinking that they are superior among other races. They may be the ones who are constant in their attacks. Or those that hit your where it hurts the most. In cases like these, it takes more than a smile to make it go away. It is cases like these that you have to assert your legal rights. Report it to your superior or to the authorities before things get too violent. You have the right to do so.