Color-Blind Racism Explained

, Malcolm A. Kline, Leave a comment

For those of us who never thought that this adjective went together with this noun, particularly as the former was derived from a very famous speech by Martin Luther King. “Compared to Jim Crow racism, the ideology of color blindness seems like ‘racism lite,'” Eduardo Bonilla-Silva claims in the fourth edition of his book Racism without Racists:Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in America.

Bonilla-Silva was “just elevated to distinguished professor of sociology at Duke University, and currently president of the American Sociological Association,” John Staddon points out in an essay distributed by The James G. Martin Center for Academic Renewal. Staddon himself is James B. Duke Professor of Psychology and Professor of Biology, Emeritus, at Duke.

Bonilla-Silva asserts that “Instead of relying on name calling (niggers, spics, chinks), color-blind racism otherizes softly (‘these people are human, too’); instead of proclaiming that God placed minorities in the world in a servile position, it suggests they are behind because they do not work hard enough; instead of viewing interracial marriage as wrong on a straight racial basis, it regards it as ‘problematic’ because of concerns over the children, location, or the extra burden it places on couples.” Odd, I’m part of an interracial couple and I never heard any of these concerns.