Last night I got caught in up an online conversation about racism. It was something that, from the outside, I'd tell people was a useless fight. The person wouldn't listen, was overly defensive and arguing with emotion rather than seeing reason. You can usually tell in the first few moments of an argument if there is any hope of the other person listening to your side, or if it will become a shouting match - this person clearly saw confrontation as needing the latter.
However, like most people, I still cant shake those bits of rage and frustration afterwards. I wonder how people can be so ignorant - it seems to me a lot of the time that it is more than just not knowing the new terminology or perhaps needing a bit of information on what words can do to people but rather a entire mindset that is will-fully ignorant. The foundation of arguments with a lot of people I've had this conversation with continually seem, at best, sketched out of soundbites from shock jocks and emotive hype and, at worst, based on nothing at all.
This is not a post about how we can tackle this but rather a post screaming 'why?' into the tumbling echoing void of others doing the exact same thing.
What is the best way to conduct yourself in an argument like that? How can you help someone see that what they're doing could be considered rude, ignorant and even harmful? How can you bring to light that 'preferences' of race are steeped in a culture of white being the norm and other races being emasculated, considered primitive, dirty etc?