In the comments to this post featuring a video of Katie Couric calling the Vice President of the United States “the white guy”, Hapkido said “Couric’s comment was racist, plain & simple. I wouldn’t accuse her of deliberatley being racist, however.”
Which gave me pause.
How can a comment be racist if the speaker isn’t?
Maybe racist is the wrong word. Time to check the dictionary… which says it means “racially discriminatory”.
That’s a head-scratcher. Discrimination implies some sort of adverse action. Katie didn’t act, she just talked. In fact, I don’t think it’s possible for ANY words (or cartoons) to be racist by themselves, apart from other evidence of speaker intent to do harm.
It’s time to resurrect two long-neglected words to help us understand this situation:
The first is an irrational opinion against something, the second is an irrational opinion in favor.
In this case, I don’t think Katie was prejudiced. She sounded CHEERFUL about the presence of “the white guy”. She wasn’t like “curse Joe Biden for destroying the multiculturalism of this moment with his foul caucasity!”
No, she was HAPPY.
So I conclude that she is not racist, but merely has a bias toward seeing groups of politicians with varying skin colors and sex organs.
Now this implies that she would conversely have a prejudice against seeing groups of similarly colored & sexed politicians. Does this mean that if she ever saw a meeting of the Congressional Black Caucus, she would end both her life and career in a Columbine-like explosion of bullets and wrath?
Logic says “yes”.
But that’s not a reason to confuse prejudice with racism.