Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Racism and Prejudice

From racism to tolerance

"What does it take for someone to move from a position of hate and racism to a position of tolerance and respect like the transformation that occurred in Derek?"

During these few weeks we were discussing in class about institutionalized racism and how it was developed. Racism is a strong concurring event around the world, but nonetheless many institutions tries to aid in this never ending war against racism and afraid of differences. We watched the movie American History X, which portraits in a very interesting point of view from someone who initially got persuaded into a group where they were against black people and their culture. From this point and beyond, he never changed his opinion and after his initial thoughts on the subject, his ideas got distorted by persuasion. He kept like this until something rather interesting and unfortunately, bad happened to him that made he think about and reflect more about it.

Derek, the man in the movie, received “guidance” from his father that was negative towards the black people. He said he should not believe in everything that they say, and that demotivated Derek to listen to his black teacher. Derek grew up by these standards, making it to him seem very normal his actions against black people. After killing a man (black) who was robbing his car, he is sent to prison. There he starts to interact with the blacks and he suffers a paradigm shift in his time present in the jail. He was feeling hate and frustration on his life, taking control over him, and he wanted to change. During his time there he was raped by white mans, who were all racists, and did not accepted Derek (white man) hanging out with black mans. He then receives a visit from his ex- teacher (black), who tries to help him. Derek simply can’t hate anymore after this, because the teacher coming just to visit and aid him in such hard times gave him an much needed epiphany, changing his whole point of view about racism and how futile it is.

This is Derek.