Blacks, Latinos agree racism a 'major problem,' whites say no
Instead of Black/Hispanic vs White it is best to view this study in terms of those who believe that they are on the outside of the societal power establishment versus those who wish to have their group's power retained.
I have pointed out previously about how even wealthy Black Americans have filed claims of RACISM against a lowly package delivery boy came up to their mansion and asked for the owner. Clearly there economic power was in the hands of the Black homeowner. Yet the perceived power to inferiorize was still in the hands of the package delivery boy, enshrined in his white skin and thus fused in the mind of the millionaire Black.
The recent report sponsored by the Ford Foundation showed that Blacks and Hispanics believe that racism (against their kind) continues to be a major problem. The Whites that were surveyed said "no".
I tend to reject the answers from both sides unless a more structured framework that can test their beliefs are how the answer is arrived at.
For the group that expresses its powerlessness I would have them to index their views of "racism" not based upon the mere presence of race based discrimination but instead against the power of such a force to derail and marginalize them. To argue about the presence or absence of racism is as much of a folly as the argument about the presence or absence of murder and rape. The bottom line - as long as their are multiple races in the same time and space people will seek group advantage of "their kind" over another.
In today's America the question can't simply be "is there racism/murder/rape present?". The more accurate assessment is "Is there there legal recourse available for the aggrieved party to be made whole?". Absent this filter then the "White man with tube socks and the 'wife beater t-shirt' in Montana who only sees Blacks and Hispanics on television can be promoted into a prime threat to Black people because he decided to hang a Black man in effigy as part of his Halloween decorations. Sadly certain civil rights leaders will fly out to his mountain compound to confront him for his offense. All the while they will drive past several unsolved murders of Black people in their own community.
For the Whites who see no racism or evil allow them to be placed in an employment situation where the manager and VP who are non-White recollect about the football party they had together over the weekend along with 3 of your peers. While all of them are of the same "kind" - they forgot to send you the invite. Over time you become curious as to how they all have scaled up the organizational ladder while you somehow remain as the senior member of the team but are never given a new assignment. They will never get to sample your award winning nacho dip at the sports gatherings in each of their respective houses.
When it comes to "White privilege" (and I say this as the frequent "only Black guy in the room" - although the fastest growing melanated group in my field of mid-level managers are the Indian-Pakistani) the prevalence of the culture of White males and females affords them the ability to set the tone of the proceedings. Indeed I am forced to "code switch" between my professional role and the fact that I just rolled up Metropolitan Avenue, an impoverished area in Atlanta to purchase the latest edition of "The Final Call" from the brother standing on the street selling papers, fruits and bean pies, just prior to arriving at my meeting with a large corporate customer. In my area of corporate sales, however, the results prove to be the main decider of everyone's continued employment.
The best way to view the subject of racism is to view the forces that are bearing down upon you as a vehicle and relate them to that of an airplane. The force of racism is like the force of gravity. When no other countervailing forces of uplift are present to confront it your vehicle will come crashing to the ground, violently destroying all who ride in it. Before the vehicle can soar it needs to understand all of these forces in the process of building the engines and flight controls necessary to not only soar but also to adjust its course and direction. The goal being not only to provide uplift to the passengers but an effective landing at the intended destination.
Beyond the flight controls and engines, however, the pilot and navigator guiding the entire effort need to make use of the "constructive feedback" that is provided by the GPS, weather reports and chronographic instruments, thus affording the information necessary for a proper course correction instead of "flying harder" in the same direction.