How to educate children not to be racist: 4 tips

Racism remains a reality which is reflected in virtually all aspects of society. Almost all countries suffer from this phenomenon, the result of irrational beliefs that have been entrenched for centuries, and combating this type of discrimination is necessary to socialize well.

On the other hand, racism is not just a matter of adults. Its symptoms already appear in childhood and, at this vital stage, can lead to episodes of cruelty and insignificant suffering: bullying, marginalization, ridicule, prejudice, etc. In this article, we will look at several tips on how to educate boys and girls not to be racist.

    Educate children to reject racism

    It should be borne in mind that racism, in order to exist, does not need to have been previously internalized by highly developed concepts about what a race is or how the black, white or similar population is. supposed to behave. It is based, fundamentally, on prejudices arising from the interpretation of certain aesthetic features.

    This means that boys and girls can now begin to develop racism almost spontaneously, without needing to ‘memorize’ anything, simply by exposing themselves to the dynamics of interaction between people with racist content. Passively, they begin to learn that those who have a certain physical appearance, dress in a certain way, or speak in a specific way, behave in a certain way.

    Knowing this, let’s see what needs to be done to educate boys and girls against racism.

    1. Do not show that there are no racialized people

    The first step in the fight against racism is recognize that there are a number of characteristics by which certain groups of people experience discrimination by factors related to their appearance or family origin. It is not possible to show, for example, that there are no “blacks” or “whites”.

    The key is, however, that since the rejection of racism, these differences between people are seen as cultural constructs, which stem from how we interpret reality, and not as something that is present in human biology regardless of make us think about it or think about it. do not. In other words, even if for biology the concept of human races does not make sense, yes it is for the social sciences.

    Thus, unapologetically expressing that racialized people exist (that is, those who have been historically discriminated against on the basis of characteristics such as the color of their skin) is necessary to proceed to the next steps to raise awareness of the condemnation of the racism.

      2. Explain why there are groups of people with different traits.

      Obviously, to very young girls and boys it is not possible to explain the secrets of genetics to themBut it is good to clarify that these traits to which a racial interpretation is attributed are like any other physical trait, such as being taller or smaller, having larger or smaller teeth, etc.

      This is important so that they understand that appearance tells us nothing about a particular someone’s personality, or their interests, language, etc.

      3. Explain that there are opposing views

      There is no point in talking about racism to children as if there is no social problem associated with it. That is why it is necessary to prevent them by explaining that some people believe that characteristics associated with races add or subtract value from people or even describe their way of thinking and feeling, and at the same time show why they are wrong.

      Basically, the idea to be defended is that any person, no matter what their appearance or more or less fits racial stereotypes, can be good or bad, shy or sociable, suspicious or warm, or in any other way what ‘she does. their way of being and behaving. Racism does not come from people’s bodies, but from situations of injustice that arose a long time ago (slavery, conquest, etc.) and the effects are still felt in the beliefs of many people.

      It is true that racism not only has a belief-based origin and that there are other material factors that feed it (for example, certain types of borders), but it is better to give up such complex explanations so that the main message is better understood.

      It is also good to give examples of common arguments used by racists to try to defend their attitude, so that they know how to recognize some of them in the future and, at this point, remember the l explanation as to why what is being said is not true.

      4. Don’t tie races to regions

      It is important that boys and girls are clear that territories do not have races, and races have no territory. For example, a person with almond-shaped eyes is not “Asian” because in Asia there are many people who do not have this characteristic and many people with this trait live there.

      Of course, to understand that these traits are more common in some areas, you can teach him some very basic notions about how life does not stay static, but changes through time (evolution) and space (migrations). .

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