By Mia Moody-Ramirez, Editor
“Mia Moody- Black Woman and Racist.” I cringed when I first saw these words during a keyword search of my name and an article that I wrote about President Barack Obama and Facebook hate groups. This post on the cincinnati.craigslist.org website has been removed. However, it left a lasting impression on me. I do not want my good intentions to be misunderstood.
First I thought that this slanderous statement could not be further from the truth. After all, in my writings, I often try to expose racism and encourage civility and social equality in the areas of gender, race, culture, class and other areas. However, the bold statement left the question in the back of my mind of whether I, as a black person, could actually be racist? I decided to explore this person’s statements a little deeper.
To answer my question, I began with the most basic source, Merriam Webster Dictionary, which offers this simple definition of racism, “The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others. It also includes the idea that “discrimination or prejudice is based on race.
”Drinnon traced racism back to pre-colonial days and provides this useful definition of racism:
Racism consists in habitual practice by a people of treating, feeling, and viewing physically dissimilar people, identified as such by skin color and other hereditary characteristics – as “less than people.”
My article pointed out comments that framed the U.S. President and first lady in a racist and stereotypical manner. Maybe the author of the column transferred some of these findings onto me?