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Everyday racism - how do we tackle it?

For many people including myself a feeling of being unwelcome or in the way of somebody else’s life simply because of your cultural background is an everyday occurrence. This thread isn’t necessarily to share stories - but feel free if you think it would help, but it’s more a discussion around what we can do about it, from all parties, those who cop it, those who see it and the people actually dishing out the hate. No matter where you sit on there, I would like to hear about different strategies to deal with or ways you think we can change it, because even though it is unfortunately never going to disappear completely, we can at least do our part in bringing attention to it and changing attitudes as much as we can. 

Does anybody have any thoughts? A question for you think about to start off maybe...

I wonder where these poor attitudes and behaviours come from? 


Re: Everyday racism - how do we tackle it?

Hey @Saltwaterdreamtime I struggle with indirect racism quiet a lot being a lighter skin murri - I think people think because I don't 'look aboriginal' in terms of my complexion that I won't be offended by things they say. 


One thing I always do is have a conversation with someone if they say something racist around me. I tell them why it's offensive and ask them to consider using it again in the future. It provides an opportunity to educate people if they don't know they're being racist and firmly sets a boundary with me. If they chose to listen to me or not is up to them but I think if we don't address it at the time it enables the behaviour to continue. 


In some instances I have corrected people and they 'justified' why it was ok which I find to be very disrespectful. I have had private conversations with my boss about it happening at work so it can be addressed with everyone. 


What are some strategies you use?


Re: Everyday racism - how do we tackle it?

@Saltwaterdreamtime I haven't personally experienced racism, though thanks to other kinds of discrimination I know the feelings of being unwelcome, ignored or hated because of who I am; so it's really important to me that I don't make others feel that way too.


I think that part of a lot of discrimination comes from people having this really narrow view of what "normal" is. They just seem to.. freak out a little when someone doesn't fit into that, and reactions to that can mean anything from the person being awkward to the person being hostile.

And then when harmful stereotypes and the idea that some people are better than others get brought into it all, stuff gets really bad sometimes...


Re: Everyday racism - how do we tackle it?

Hey @Saltwaterdreamtime, great discussion for a thread! Being an Australian-born Asian, I suffered from racism quite often growing up, despite being born and raised in Australia. It appeared that not looking like the typical "Australian" was still viewed as being an outsider.

I find that nowadays it is shifting from direct racism (e.g., making direct mean comments) to indirect racism like what @lennycat2017 has mentioned previously in this thread. The problem with this indirect racism is that it is still as harmful as direct racism, it is not as noticeable as direct racism, which makes it difficult to detect.

In terms of tackling racism, I agree with @lennycat2017 that having a conversation and educating them about racism helps, but it is not always successful.

However, in saying this, I've noticed that for me, I don't experience racism as much when I'm in multicultural and diverse communities. Therefore, this shows how extremely important multiculturalism and diversity is.
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