Michael Richards, better known as Kramer from TVs Seinfeld does make a good point. This is excerpted from his defense speech in court, where he found himself after making racial comments in his comedy act. He made some very interesting points.
There are African Americans, Mexican Americans, Asian Americans, Arab Americans, Indian Americans etc., and then there are just plain old Americans. You can pass me on the street and sneer in my direction. You call me ‘White boy,’ “Gringo’, ‘Roundeye’, ‘Cracker,’ ‘Honkey,’ ‘Whitey,’ ‘Ofay’, ‘Charlie’, ‘Caveman’… and that will be generally accepted, that’s considered “OK”…
Conversely, however, when I call you: “Nigger, Spic, Towel head, Sand-nigger, Camel Jockey, Beaner, Gook, Jap, or Chink” you are outraged, you call me a racist, and modern society joins in the chorus behind you. You say that whites commit most violence against you… so why are the ghettos the most dangerous places to live? You have the United Negro College Fund. You have Martin Luther King Day. You have Black History Month. You have Cesar Chavez Day. There are organizations like Yom Hashoah and La Raza. You have Mauled Al-Nabi. You even have Kwanzaa. If we say “Merry Christmas” it is now considered offensive.
You have the NAACP. You have BET…. If we had WET (“White Entertainment Television”), that would surely be labeled racist… If we had a White Pride Day, you would call us racists. If we had White History Month, we’d be racists. If we had any organization for only whites designed to ‘advance’ OUR lives, we’d be racists. There is a Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, a Black Chamber of Commerce…. and then we just have the plain Chamber of Commerce which welcomes all people. A white woman could not be in the Miss Black American pageant, but any color can be in the Miss America pageant.
There are over sixty openly proclaimed Black Colleges in the US, yet if there were ‘White colleges’, that would surely be racist, and Lawsuits would follow! If we had a college fund that only gave white students scholarships… You know we’d be called racists. In the Million Man March, you believed that you were marching for your race and rights. Yet if we marched for our race and rights, you would call us racists, and the Press would echo that, and the politicians would give speeches against us.
You are proud to be black, brown, yellow and orange, and you’re not afraid to announce it. You even band together under the banner “People of Color,” but when we announce our white pride, you call us racists.
You rob us, carjack us, rape us, and shoot at us. But, when a white police officer shoots a black gang member or Latino drug dealer, criminals clearly posing a threat to society, you call him a racist, and he is prosecuted for doing his job, for protecting us.
I am proud of my heritage…. But you call me a racist for saying that. Think about it! Why is it that only whites can be accused of being racists?
I can sense the frustration of this email author, whether it was Michael Richards or someone else. However, as Christians, we should look for the Biblical World View. The fact is this, if one believes Scripture, everyone descends from one race… Adam’s. Also, we can all be traced back to Noah and his wife. So, for Christians, race is not genetic, it is cultural. It is man-made. Racism is not new, it is as old as Cain and Abel, and provides evidence of our fallen sin-nature. It has its roots in jealousy, selfishness, and pride.
To get God’s perspective, consider Jesus Christ’s attitude toward prejudice. In the time of Christ, Jews and Samaritans were cultural racists toward one another. It was not acceptable for them to mingle, much like blacks and whites in America before the Civil Rights movement. The Parable of the Good Samaritan, found in the Gospel of Luke 10:30-37, provides some insight. Jesus, of Jewish heritage, cast the villains in the story as Jews and the hero as Samaritan. What makes that story interesting is the context. Verses 25-29 provide the context of the story:
And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” He said to him, “What is written in the Law? How do you read it?” And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.” And he said to him, “You have answered correctly; do this, and you will live.” But he, desiring to justify himself, said to Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”
It was there that Jesus told the “Parable of the Good Samaritan.” He boldly proclaimed that we are all neighbors and should love and care for one another… regardless of our cultural differences. This is one way we show forth the love of God in us. It is sad and unfortunate this truth has not permeated our churches in America. Too many churches and denominations still cling to the cultural racism that has divided us for far too long.