racial equity faq sheet

What is racism?

Racism is when a person judges another person by the color of their skin as a way to increase their own power. Because racism is prejudice plus power, there can be no such thing as reverse racism.

What is the difference between equity & equality? 

Racial equity acknowledges the historic and current conditions that have marginalized People of Color, and attempts to amend these past and current injustices and biases. Equality, however, assumes that everyone comes from the same playing field and deserves equal treatment. Equality fails to acknowledge that others come from disadvantaged and marginalized positions.

What is privilege? 

EverydayFeminism describes privilege as a set of unearned benefits given to people who fit into a certain social group.  Privilege is arguably harder to identify than oppression, because it is hidden to those who possess it. Privileged people are more often in positions of power, and made to believe that their societal standing is neutral and natural.

Why do Black Lives Matter? 

“Rooted in the experiences of Black people in this country who actively resist our dehumanization, #BlackLivesMatter is a call to action and a response to the virulent anti-Black racism that permeates our society.” “Black Lives Matter is an ideological and political intervention in a world where Black lives are systematically and intentionally targeted for demise.  It is an affirmation of Black folks’ contributions to this society, our humanity, and our resilience in the face of deadly oppression.” (http://blacklivesmatter.com/about/)

How is racism maintained? 

Racism protects itself by interlaying itself into a complex set of layers: the Internal/Interpersonal, Institutional, Cultural and Structural.

  • Interpersonal: actions that perpetuate inequalities on the basis of race.  Such behaviors may be intentional or unintentional; unintentional acts may be racist in their consequence.

  • Institutional: laws, customs, traditions and practices that systematically result in inequalities in a society.  This is the institutionalization of personal discrimination. Benefits are structured to advantage powerful groups as the expense of others.

  • Cultural: is the society’s values, beliefs and attitudes, which are the product of factors that include the social group‘s history, culture and ethnic background

  • Structural: Structural racism refers to the ways in which the joint operation of institutions (i.e., inter-institutional arrangements and interactions) produce racialized outcomes, even in the absence of racist intent.  Indicators of structural racism include power inequalities, unequal access to opportunities, and differing policy outcomes by race. (https://world-trust.org/about/about-world-trust/system/)

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