Cap Against Race Affs—UMich 2013



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Alt: Inclusivity

The alternative asks you to view the debate through a Marxist analysis of race, gender, and class—only by including all these perspectives can we solve oppression


Belkhir 01, (Jean Ait, founded the American Sociological Association Section on Race, Gender and Class, Professor of Sociology at the University of New Orleans, “Marxism Without Apologies: Integrating Race, Gender, Class; A Working Class Approach”, Race, Gender, and Class 8:2, April 2001, ProQuest)//AS

Bringing racism, sexism and classism to an end requires the elimination of classism, racism and sexism on all social levels including changing the macro-level structures of capitalism so that power and decision-making are shared in a way that prevents exploitation based on class, race, or gender and allows for political as well as economic democracy. On a personal level freeing ourselves from classism, racism and sexism requires reversing the conditioning process through healing the emotional wounds of race, gender and class oppression, reclaiming our past and present class, race and gender experiences, and sorting out how classism, racism and sexism presently and in the past prevents us from being ourselves, from shaping our own identities, and from having the kinds of relationships we want with all people. Our goal is to create a society that is free of racism, and classism and that is democratic, equitable, and humane. The anti-racism/sexism/classism movement is a powerful social movement. However, the movement faces enormous challenges in the future. Among the most urgent, is the need to develop a more inclusive, culturally sensitive, broad-based political agenda that will appeal to those who suffer the most from racism, sexism and classism: the multi-racial, multicultural, working-class women and men in this global economic system, who are still left out of the race, gender and class political and social agenda. We seek to build a broad, unifying theory and movement playing at the center of the Marxist analysis of capitalism the voices of those people who have been so insulted, betrayed, brutalized, maltreated, mythified, deified, silenced, exploited, numbed, and dulled not only by the organic intellectuals who are in service to the dominant society, but also by those organic intellectuals who claim to be in service to and in affinity with oppressed people everywhere.

Alt: Reconceptualization




The alternative is to reconceptualize difference in terms of historical materialism—understanding the situation of oppression relative to capital is essential—the aff’s identity politics precludes this


Scatamburlo-D’Annibale and McLaren 04 (Valerie and Peter, associate professor in the Department of Communication, Media and Film at the University of Windsor and Professor in the Division of Urban Schooling, the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at UCLA, “Class Dismissed? Historical materialism and the politics of ‘difference’”, Educational Philosophy and Theory 36:2, April 2004, Wiley)//AS

Post-al’ theorizations of ‘difference’ circumvent and undermine any systematic knowledge of the material dimensions of difference and tend to segregate questions of ‘difference’ from class formation and capitalist social relations. We therefore believe that it is necessary to (re)conceptualize ‘difference’ by drawing upon Marx's materialist and historical formulations. ‘Difference’ needs to be understood as the product of social contradictions and in relation to political and economic organization. We need to acknowledge that ‘otherness’ and/or difference is not something that passively happens, but, rather, is actively produced. In other words, since systems of differences almost always involve relations of domination and oppression, we must concern ourselves with the economies of relations of difference that exist in specific contexts. Drawing upon the Marxist concept of mediation enables us to unsettle our categorical approaches to both class and difference, for it was Marx himself who warned against creating false dichotomies in the situation of our politics—that it was absurd to ‘choose between consciousness and the world, subjectivity and social organization, personal or collective will and historical or structural determination.’ In a similar vein, it is equally absurd to see ‘difference as a historical form of consciousness unconnected to class formation, development of capital and class politics’ (Bannerji, 1995, p. 30). Bannerji points to the need to historicize ‘difference’ in relation to the history and social organization of capital and class (inclusive of imperialist and colonialist legacies). Apprehending the meaning and function of difference in this manner necessarily highlights the importance of exploring (1) the institutional and structural aspects of difference; (2) the meanings that get attached to categories of difference; and (3) how differences are produced out of, and lived within specific historical formations.5 Moreover, it presents a challenge to those theorizations that work to consolidate ‘identitarian’ understandings of difference based exclusively on questions of cultural or racial hegemony. In such approaches, the answer to oppression often amounts to creating greater cultural space for the formerly excluded to have their voices heard (represented). In this regard, much of what is called the ‘politics of difference’ is little more than a demand for inclusion into the club of representation —a posture which reinscribes a neo-liberal pluralist stance rooted in the ideology of free-market capitalism. In short, the political sphere is modeled on the marketplace and freedom amounts to the liberty of all vendors to display their ‘different’ cultural goods. What advocates of this approach fail to address is that the forces of diversity and difference are allowed to flourish provided that they remain within the prevailing forms of capitalist social arrangements. The neo-pluralism of difference politics (including those based on ‘race’) cannot adequately pose a substantive challenge to the productive system of capitalism that is able to accommodate a vast pluralism of ideas and cultural practices, and cannot capture the ways in which various manifestations of oppression are intimately connected to the central dynamics of capitalist exploitation. An historical materialist approach understands that categories of ‘difference’ are social/political constructs that are often encoded in dominant ideological formations and that they often play a role in ‘moral’ and ‘legal’ state-mediated forms of ruling. It also acknowledges the ‘material’ force of ideologies—particularly racist ideologies—that assign separate cultural and/or biological essences to different segments of the population which, in turn, serve to reinforce and rationalize existing relations of power. But more than this, an historical materialist understanding foregrounds the manner in which ‘difference’ is central to the exploitative production/reproduction dialectic of capital, its labor organization and processes, and in the way labor is valued and renumerated.

Alt: Psychoanalysis




The alternative is to embrace the memory of what capital has done to the black body—this genealogy is key to stopping destructive progress


Farley 12 (Anthony Paul, James Campbell Matthews Distinguished Professor of Jurisprudence at Albany Law School, “CRITICAL RACE THEORY AND MARXISM: TEMPORAL POWER”, Columbia Journal of Race and Law 1:3, University of Michigan Libraries)//AS

There is no such thing as race unless there is first an act of mass murder that attaches the mark of race to capital. That is the sin of capital; capital requires mass murder and it makes race out of that mass murder. The race born of this is always divided in two, one race with an abundance and the other race with a lack. The latter race, the one with the lack, is forced by force of arms to silently suffer or to work for a legal equality that must, as a matter of maintaining what appears in the form of race, the very sign under which they gather, appear to be the order of the universe, be denied in ever more clever ways. Striving for equality within the boundaries authorized by the very system that has attached race to lack, the race with the lack succeeds only in forgetting: The patient cannot remember the whole of what is repressed in him, and what he cannot remember may be precisely the essential part of it . . . He is obliged to repeat the repressed material as a contemporary experience instead of . . . remembering it as something belonging to the past. These reproductions, which emerge with an unwished for exactitude, always have as their subject some portion of infantile sexual life . . . that are invariably acted out in the sphere of the transference, of the patient’s relation to the physician.33 Psychoanalysis, the talking cure, has as its object of study—its queer contents—the unspeakable event. The unspeakable event, in other words, is what we talk about when we talk about psychoanalysis. That is why psychoanalysis, to the extent it operates as a cure, has always to do with “other words,” words other than what we meant to say. The cure for the individual may be the cure for the group. The talking cure proceeds by freeing the analysand’s speech from the usual constraints of propriety and relevance. Once free to roam the enclosure of the analytic space, the analysand’s speech sometimes returns to its source. When the analysand’s speech returns it does so in the shape of whatever it was the analysand had previously not allowed herself or himself to know. Thoughts and feelings from one moment in time are transferred onto the person of the analyst. The transferred thoughts and feelings, transferred to the person of the analyst, may show the analysand, by not fitting, just how much work she or he has done to make those feelings appear to fit. The theatre of transference ‘shows’ the analysand a way out of her or his temporal tangle. There is a temporal power that is exercised within time. There is also a temporal power that is said to be eternal, and exercised outside of time. This Essay concerns neither the power that is exercised within time, nor the power that is said to be exercised outside of time. Temporal power, as that term is used herein, is the power that is exercised over time itself. This is an essay about temporal power. Time is created. Time can also be destroyed. If modernity is the “drawing of a line,” then color and time are not parallel, they are self-same, the one is also the other one. Trauma is another word for destroyed time. So is repetition. The repetitions are another mode by which we destroy time. We live the horizonless trauma and experience constant repetition of unremembered experience as the passage of time. But it is not the passage of time, it is only repetition. Modern progress is a line of destroyed time, a line drawn in sand that has already slipped away. Modern time is not time; it is destroyed time, spectacular time. Modern progress is not progress at all. Life moves on. But progress does not move. Modern progress does not progress. Modern progress can only repeat, endlessly, and repetition, however endless it may be, is not life, it is a line, a timeline, every segment of which is as identical to the rest. It does not have to be this way: This earth divided We will make whole So it can be A common treasury for all.34 Memory is a first step to making this earth whole. And this is what is to be remembered about the genealogies of property represented by “the bill of sale”: By theft and murder They took the land Now everywhere the walls Rise up at their command.35

Alt: Orthodox Marxism


Thus the alternative is one of Orthodox Marxism – the time is now and it’s the only prerequisite for our emancipation from social inequality

Tumino 1[Stephen, Prof English at Pitt, ““What is Orthodox Marxism and Why it Matters Now More than Ever”, Red Critique, p. online, http://redcritique.org/spring2001/printversions/whatisorthodoxmarxismprint.htm SGarg]

It is only Orthodox Marxism that explains socialism as an historical inevitability that is tied to the development of social production itself and its requirements.Orthodox Marxism makes socialism scientific because it explains how in the capitalist system, based on the private consumption of labor-power (competition), the objective tendency is to reduce the amount of time labor spends in reproducing itself (necessary labor) while expanding the amount of time labor is engaged in producing surplus-value (surplus-labor) for the capitalist through the introduction of machinery into the production process by the capitalists themselves to lower their own labor costs. Because of the competitive drive for profits under capitalismit is historically inevitable that a point is reached when the technical mastery—the amount of time socially necessary on average to meet the needs of society through the processing of natural resources—is such that the conditions of the workers worsen relative to the owners and becomes an unbearable global social contradiction in the midst of the ever greater mass of wealth produced.It is therefore just as inevitable that at such a moment it obviously makes more sense to socialize production and meet the needs of all to avoid the explosive social conflicts perpetually generated by private property than to maintain the system at the risk of total social collapse on a world scale. "Socialism or barbarism" (Luxemburg) is the inevitable choice faced by humanity because of capitalism.Either maintain private property and the exploitation of labor in production, in which case more and more social resources will go into policing the growingly desperate surplus-population generated by the technical efficiency of social production, or socialize production and inaugurate a society whose founding principle is "from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs" (Marx, Critique of the Gotha Program, Selected Works, 325) and "in which the free development of each is the condition for the free development of all" (Manifesto of the Communist Party, Selected Works, 53).The time has come to state it clearly so that even the flexodox opportunists may grasp it: Orthodox Marxism is not a free-floating "language-game" or "meta-narrative" for arbitrarily constructing local utopian communities or spectral activist inversions of ideology meant to seduce "desire" and "mobilize" (glorify) subjectivity—it is an absolute prerequisite for our emancipation from exploitation and a new society freed from necessity! Orthodox Marxism is the only global theory of social change.Only Orthodox Marxism has explained why under the system of wage-labor and capital communism is not "an ideal to which reality will have to adjust itself" but "the real movement which abolishes the present state of things" (The German Ideology 57) because of its objective explanation of and ceaseless commitment to "the self-conscious, independent movement of the immense majority, in the interest of the immense majority" (Manifesto of the Communist Party, Selected Works, 45)to end social inequality forever.

Policy Solves Race

Racism is a creation of policy and can only be destroyed by engaging with the state


Coates 13 (Ta-nehesi, senior editor at The Atlantic,“Good People, Racist People”, The Atlantic, 3/8/13, http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/03/good-people-racist-people/273843/)//AS

The "I'm not racist even though I'm doing something actually racist right now" rationale is linked to the notion of racism as something worthy of societal condemnation. That is a good thing. As Sugrue identifies in his book, you see a post-World-War-II consensus forming in the 1950s that racial discrimination actually is wrong. Along with that (perhaps in the 60s) comes the idea that racism is something that "low-class" white people do. It's not a system of laws and policies, so much as the ideology of Cletus the slack-jawed yokel. But Arnold Hirsch and Beryl Satter's work shows the University of Chicago quietly and privately pursuing a racist strategy of "urban renewal" while publicly claiming otherwise. None of this is new. It's akin to proto-Confederates loudly and lustily defending slavery, daring the North to war before 1865, and then afterward claiming that the war really wasn't about slavery. The point is to save face. Last night I had the luxury of sitting and talking with the brilliant historian Barbara Fields. One point she makes that very few Americans understand is that racism is a creation.You read Edmund Morgan's workand actually see racism being inscribed in the law and the country changing as a result. If we accept that racism is a creation, then we must then accept that it can be destroyed. And if we accept that it can be destroyed, we must then accept that it can be destroyed by us and that it likely must be destroyed by methods kin to creation. Racism was created by policy. It will likely only be ultimately destroyed by policy. That is hard to take. If Forrest Whitaker sticks out in that deli for reasons of individual mortal sin, we can castigate the guy who frisked him and move on. But if he -- and others like him -- stick out for reasons of policy, for decisions that we, as a state, have made, then we have a problem. Then we have to do something beyond being nice to each other.


Racism is not inherent—it is a policy creation that can be dismantled by policy


Bouie 13 (Jamelle, staff writer at The American Prospect, “Making (and Dismantling) Racism”, The American Prospect, 3/11/13, http://prospect.org/article/making-and-dismantling-racism)//AS

Over at The Atlantic, Ta-NehisiCoates has been exploring the intersection of race and public policy, with a focus on white supremacy as a driving force in political decisions at all levels of government. This has led him to two conclusions: First, that anti-black racism as we understand it is a creation of explicit policy choicesthe decision to exclude, marginalize, and stigmatize Africans and their descendants has as much to do with racial prejudice as does any intrinsic tribalism. And second, that it's possible to dismantle this prejudice using public policy. Here is Coates in his own words: Last night I had the luxury of sitting and talking with the brilliant historian Barbara Fields. One point she makes that very few Americans understand is that racism is a creation. You read Edmund Morgan’s work and actually see racism being inscribed in the law and the country changing as a result. If we accept that racism is a creation, then we must then accept that it can be destroyed. And if we accept that it can be destroyed, we must then accept that it can be destroyed by us and that it likely must be destroyed by methods kin to creation. Racism was created by policy. It will likely only be ultimately destroyed by policy. Over at his blog, Andrew Sullivan offers a reply: I don’t believe the law created racism any more than it can create lust or greed or envy or hatred. It can encourage or mitigate these profound aspects of human psychology – it can create racist structures as in the Jim Crow South or Greater Israel. But it can no more end these things that it can create them. A complementary strategy is finding ways for the targets of such hatred to become inured to them, to let the slurs sting less until they sting not at all. Not easy. But a more manageable goal than TNC’s utopianism. I can appreciate the point Sullivan is making, but I'm not sure it's relevant to Coates' argument. It is absolutely true that "Group loyalty is deep in our DNA," as Sullivan writes. And if you define racism as an overly aggressive form of group loyalty—basically just prejudice—then Sullivan is right to throw water on the idea that the law can "create racism any more than it can create lust or greed or envy or hatred." But Coates is making a more precise claim: That there's nothing natural about the black/white divide that has defined American history. White Europeans had contact with black Africans well before the trans-Atlantic slave tradewithout the emergence of an anti-black racism. It took particular choices made by particular people—in this case, plantation owners in colonial Virginia—to make black skin a stigma, to make the "one drop rule" a defining feature of American life for more than a hundred years. By enslaving African indentured servants and allowing their white counterparts a chance for upward mobility, colonial landowners began the process that would make white supremacy the ideology of America. The position of slavery generated a stigma that then justified continued enslavement—blacks are lowly, therefore we must keep them as slaves. Slavery (and later, Jim Crow) wasn't built to reflect racism as much as it was built in tandem with it. And later policy, in the late 19th and 20th centuries, further entrenched white supremacist attitudes. Block black people from owning homes, and they're forced to reside in crowded slums. Onlookers then use the reality of slums to deny homeownership to blacks, under the view that they're unfit for suburbs. In other words, create a prohibition preventing a marginalized group from engaging in socially sanctioned behavior—owning a home, getting married—and then blame them for the adverse consequences. Indeed, in arguing for gay marriage and responding to conservative critics, Sullivan has taken note of this exact dynamic. Here he is twelve years ago, in a column for The New Republicthat builds on earlier ideas: Gay men--not because they're gay but because they are men in an all-male subculture--are almost certainly more sexually active with more partners than most straight men. (Straight men would be far more promiscuous, I think, if they could get away with it the way gay guys can.) Many gay men value this sexual freedom more than the stresses and strains of monogamous marriage (and I don't blame them). But this is not true of all gay men. Many actually yearn for social stability, for anchors for their relationships, for the family support and financial security that come with marriage. To deny this is surely to engage in the "soft bigotry of low expectations." They may be a minority at the moment. But with legal marriage, their numbers would surely grow. And they would function as emblems in gay culture of a sexual life linked to stability and love. [Emphasis added] What else is this but a variation on Coates' core argument, that society can create stigmas by using law to force particular kinds of behavior? Insofar as gay men were viewed as unusually promiscuous, it almost certainly had something to do with the fact that society refused to recognize their humanity and sanction their relationships. The absence of any institution to mediate love and desire encouraged behavior that led this same culture to say "these people are too degenerate to participate in this institution." If the prohibition against gay marriage helped create an anti-gay stigma, then lifting it—as we've seen over the last decade—has helped destroy it. There's no reason racism can't work the same way.

Racism is not the product of individual evil but societal-level norms reinforced through economics


Coates 13 (Ta-nehesi, senior editor at The Atlantic, “The Good, Racist People”, The New York Times, 3/6/13, http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/07/opinion/coates-the-good-racist-people.html?src=me&ref=general&_r=0)

The idea that racism lives in the heart of particularly evil individuals, as opposed to the heart of a democratic society, is reinforcing to anyone who might, from time to time, find their tongue sprinting ahead of their discretion. We can forgive Whitaker’s assailant. Much harder to forgive is all that makes Whitaker stand out in the first place. New York is a city, like most in America, that bears the scars of redlining, blockbusting and urban renewal. The ghost of those policies haunts us in a wealth gap between blacks and whites that has actually gotten worse over the past 20 years. But much worse, it haunts black people with a kind of invisible violence that is given tell only when the victim happens to be an Oscar winner. The promise of America is that those who play by the rules, who observe the norms of the “middle class,” will be treated as such. But this injunction is only half-enforced when it comes to black people, in large part because we were never meant to be part of the American story. Forest Whitaker fits that bill, and he was addressed as such. I am trying to imagine a white president forced to show his papers at a national news conference, and coming up blank. I am trying to a imagine a prominent white Harvard professor arrested for breaking into his own home, and coming up with nothing. I am trying to see Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage being frisked at an upscale deli, and I find myself laughing in the dark. It is worth considering the messaging here. It says to black kids: “Don’t leave home. They don’t want you around.” It is messaging propagated by moral people.


Alt Solvency

Using the political to dismantle capitalism solves racist policy and prevents the Right from demolishing positive government forces


Reed 08 (Adolph L., professor of political science at the University of Pennsylvania “Race and the New Deal Coalition”, The Nation, 3/20/08, http://www.thenation.com/article/race-and-new-deal-coalition#axzz2ZcPH3kri)//AS

That so much of recent liberal and left discussion of the New Deal has been charged by the imperatives of current political debates has given it an unfortunate either/or quality. In reality, the New Deal was both racially discriminatory and a boon to many black Americans. Blacks benefited relatively less than whites from many social policy initiatives. Worse, postwar urban renewal--one of the main conduits of federal resources to the local level--actively intensified racial disadvantage as blacks and Puerto Ricans were displaced for federally supported redevelopment at a rate more than 500 percent greater than their share of the national population. But benefiting relatively less does not mean not benefiting. The Social Security exclusions were overturned, and black people did participate in the WPA, Federal Writers' Project, CCC and other classic New Deal initiatives, as well as federal income relief. Moreover, the National Labor Relations Act facilitated the Congress of Industrial Organizations' efforts, from which blacks also benefited substantially. Black Americans' emergence as a significant constituency in the Democratic electoral coalition helped to alter the party's center of gravity and was one of the factors--as was black presence in the union movement--contributing to the success of the postwar civil rights insurgency. One lesson to take from reflecting on the New Deal is that political institutions and the politics rooted in them can have significant and far-reaching consequences.The right understands this well. When Newt Gingrich and his protofascist comrades took over Congress in 1994, they sneeringly boasted that they intended to take the federal government back to the 1920s. This was not only because they were bent on eliminating redistributive social programs. They also wanted to extirpate from the culture the idea that government can be an active force for making most people's lives better. By crippling public institutions, they leave us without any rudder or focus for an effective politics. We need to remember that in the lived experience of younger Americans today, public power and government capacity have been only dismissed and disparaged. Both Democratic presidential candidates qualify their embrace of federal activism and temporize with fealty to market forces and calls to personal responsibility. Therefore, the nostalgic identification that those of us who are older or who grew up in left, union or Democratic activist households feel for the New Deal era will not transfer well to others. I've seen this with my own students. To those young people who encounter the era, unions may have been necessary then; federal intervention and regulation may have been appropriate then. We can use the New Deal as part of a discussion about what government can do and how its actions can change the playing field in progressive ways. What we need most of all, though, is to articulate a politics steeped in a vision like that of the industrial democracy that fed the social movements that pushed the New Deal to be as much as it was.

The only way to solve for racism is to unite workers and attack the conditions that allow for the perpetuation of capitalism and racism

Selfa, Senior Research Scientist in the Education and Child Development department at National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago, 2003

(Lance, “Slavery and the Origins of Racism”, International Socialist Review, Issue 26, http://www.isreview.org/issues/26/roots_of_racism.shtml)//SGarg



What does this discussion mean for us today? First,racism is not part of some unchanging human nature. It was literally invented. And soit can be torn down. Second, despite the overwhelming ideological hold of white supremacy, people always resisted it—from the slaves themselves to white anti-racists. Understanding racism in this way informs the strategy that we use to combat racism. Antiracist education is essential, but it is not enough. Because it treats racism only as a question of “bad ideas it does not address the underlying material conditions that give rise to the acceptance of racism among large sections of workers.32›Thoroughly undermining the hold of racism on large sections of workers requires three conditions:first, a broader class fightback that unites workers across racial lines; second, attacking the conditions(bad jobs, housing, education, etc.) that give rise to the appeal of racism among large sections of workers; and third, the conscious intervention of antiracists to oppose racism in all its manifestations and to win support for interracial class solidarity. The hold of racism breaks down when the class struggle against the bosses forces workers to seek solidarity across racial lines.Socialists believe that such class unity is possible because white workers have an objective interest in fighting racism. Theðinfluence of racism on white workers is a question of their consciousness, not a question of some material bribe from the system they receive. Struggle creates conditions by which racism can be challenged and defeated.Racism and capitalism have been intertwined since the beginning of capitalism. You can’t have capitalism without racism. Therefore, the final triumph over racism will only come when we abolish the source of racism—capitalism—and build a new socialist society.

Marxism provides a concrete mechanism for social change and emancipation—their postmodern project cannot


Cole 03 (Mike, senior lecturer in education, University of Brighton, “Might It Be in the Practice that It Fails to Succeed? A Marxist Critique of Claims for Postmodernism and Poststructuralism as Forces for Social Change and Social Justice”, British Journal of Sociology of Education 24:4, September 2003, JSTOR)//AS

Atkinson's main argument seems to be that the strength of postmodernism is that it 'comes as something of a shock' (2002, p. 78) [10] and reveals subtexts and textual silences. Well, so does Marxism on both counts. The difference is that with the former, after our shock, there is not much else to do, except at the local level. One of the great strengths of Marxism is that allows us to move beyond appearances, and to look beneath the surface and to move forward. It allows us to transgress Derrida's 'ordeal of the undecidable', Lather's 'praxis of not being so sure', and Jones' and Baxter's 'paralysis of practice'. Marx's Labour Theory of Value (LTV), for example, explains most concisely why capitalism is objectively a system of exploitation, whether the exploited realise it or not, or indeed whether they believe it to be an issue of importance for them or not. The LTV also provides a solution to this exploitation. It thus provides dialectical praxis-the authentic union of theory and practice. According to the LTV, the interests of capitalists and workers are diametrically opposed, since a benefit to the former (profits) is a cost to the latter (Hickey, 2002, p. 168). Marx argued that workers' labour is embodied in goods that they produce. The finished products are appropriated (taken away) by the capitalists and eventually sold at a profit. However, the worker is paid only a fraction of the value he/she creates in productive labour; the wage does not represent the total value he/she creates. We appear to be paid for every single second we work. However, underneath this appearance, this fetishism, the working day (like under serfdom) is split in two: into socially necessary labour (and the wage represents this) and surplus labour, labour that is not reflected in the wage. This is the basis of surplus value, out of which comes the capitalist's profit. While the value of the raw materials and of the depreciating machinery is simply passed on to the commodity in production, labour power is a peculiar, indeed unique, commodity, in that it creates new value. 'The magical quality of labour-power's ... value for ... capital is therefore critical' (Rikowski, 2001, p. 11). '[L]abour-power creates more value (profit) in its consumption than it possesses itself, and than it costs' (Marx, 1966, p. 351). Unlike, for example, the value of a given commodity, which can only be realised in the market as itself, labour creates a new value, a value greater than itself, a value that previously did not exist. It is for this reason that labour power is so important for the capitalist, in the quest for capital accumulation. It is in the interest of the capitalist or capitalists (nowadays, capitalists may, of course, consist of a number of shareholders, for example, rather than outright owners of businesses) to maximise profits, and this entails (in order to create the greatest amount of new value) keeping workers' wages as low as is 'acceptable' in any given country or historical period, without provoking effective strikes or other forms of resistance. Therefore, the capitalist mode of production is, in essence, a system of exploitation of one class (the working class) by another (the capitalist class) Whereas class conflict is endemic to the capitalist system, and ineradicable and perpetual within the capitalist system, it does not always or even typically take the form of open conflict or expressed hostility (Hickey, 2002, p. 168). Fortunately for the working class, however, capitalism is prone to cyclical instability and subject to periodic political and economic crises. At these moments, the possibility exists for socialist revolution. Revolution can only come about when the working class, in addition to being a 'class-in-itself (an objective fact because of the shared exploitation inherent as a result of the LTV) becomes 'a class-for-itself (Marx, 1976b). By this, Marx meant a class with a subjective awareness of its social class position; that is, a class with 'class consciousness' including its awareness of its exploitation and its transcendence of 'false consciousness'.


Capitalism sets the limits for sociopolitical change—dismantling it is key to meaningful change


Young 06 (Robert, Julius Silver Professor of English and Comparative Literature. At New York University, “Putting Materialism back into Race Theory: Toward a Transformative Theory of Race”, The Red Critique 11, Winter/Spring 2006, http://www.redcritique.org/WinterSpring2006/puttingmaterialismbackintoracetheory.htm)//AS

In one of the few recent texts to explore the centrality of class, bell hooks' Where We Stand, we are, once again, still left with a reaffirmation of capitalism. For instance, hooks argues for changes within capitalism: "I identify with democratic socialism, with a vision of participatory economics within capitalism that aims to challenge and change class hierarchy" (156). Capitalism produces class hierarchy and, therefore, as long as capitalism remains, class hierarchy and antagonism will remain. Hence, the solution requires a transformation of class society. However, hooks mystifies capitalism as a transhistorical system and thus she can assert that the "poor may be with us always" (129). Under this view, politics becomes a matter of "bearing witness" to the crimes of capitalism, but rather than struggle for its replacement, hooks call for strategies of "self-actualization" and redistributing resources to the poor. She calls for the very same thing—collectivity—that capitalism cannot provide because social resources are privatized under capitalism. Consequently, Hooks' program for "self-esteem" is an attempt to put a human face on capitalism. Whether one considers the recent work by African-American humanists, or discourse theorists, or even left-liberal intellectuals, these various groups—despite their intellectual differences—form a ruling coalition and one thing is clear: capitalism set the limit for political change, as there is no alternative to the rule of capital. In contrast to much of contemporary race theory, a transformative theory of race highlights the political economy of race in the interests of an emancipatory political project. Wahneema Lubiano once wrote that "the idea of race and the operation of racism are the best friends that the economic and political elite have in the United States" (vii). Race mystifies the structure of exploitation and masks the severe inequalities within global capitalism. I am afraid that, at this point, many contemporary race theorists, in their systematic erasure of materialism, have become close (ideological) allies with the economic and political elites, who deny even the existence of classes. A transformative race theory pulls back into focus the struggle against exploitation and sets a new social priority "in which the free development of each is the condition for the free development of all" (Marx 31).

Neoliberalism uses anti-racist discourse to distract from the fact that economics are the root cause of oppression and suffering—New Orleans proves


Reed 06 (Adolph L., professor of political science at the University of Pennsylvania, “Undone by Neoliberalism”, The Nation, 9/18/06)//AS

The neoliberal worldview, which the late Daniel Singer, among others, memorialized as TINA—There Is No Alter native to market logic—has become the default position of common sense. Its smug moral standard is drawn from an idealized world in which equivalent individuals make choices in line with an abstract market rationality. Its viciousness seeped through even during the phase of mass-mediated compassion for the human suffering in New Orleans. The litany of victim-blaming questions frequently enough arose: Why didn’t they evacuate? Why would they choose to live below sea level? Why should we be expected to pay for their choices? Those questions no doubt had a racial edge regarding New Orleans, but it is useful to re call that Joseph Allbaugh, Michael Brown’s predecessor as FEMA director, denigrated FEMA as a huge “entitlement program” when he took over and promptly stonewalled rural white, heavily Republican Missourians with the same kind of accusatory language during the severe flooding of the Mississippi River in 2001. A critique that focuses just on race misses how the deeper structures of neoliberal practice and ideology underlie the travesty in New Orleans, as well as in the other devastated areas of the Gulf Coast. (Adjacent to the Lower Ninth Ward, St. Bernard launched as an emergency health clinic and relief center days after Katrina by Malik Rahim, a former Black Panther. Under the slogan “Solidarity, Not Charity,” Common Ground soon became a beacon for Seattle-generation activists, and has since proliferated new outposts and projects across the city, from house-gutting to “bio-remediation” of soil toxins and the opening of a Women’s Center. The success and high profile of Common Ground—which has brought some 10,000 volunteers through its crash-course program in mutual aid that includes a radical history of New Orleans and a workshop in “Dismantling Racism”—have overshadowed other impressive youth efforts in the region, such as a spring-break drive that brought more than a thousand students from historically black colleges into community projects. This is their Freedom Summer, and those making the pilgrimage can’t help but be changed by the experience. They’ve been cast into a scattered but epic battle between the Gulf’s dispossessed—relegated to lives in tents, trailers and exile—and a gathering storm of privateers and power brokers whose ambitions can only sharpen the divide between those who have and those who are clearly holding on to very little. Which, in the eyes of New Orleans lawyer-activist Bill Quig ley, prepares them perfectly for the struggles they face back home. “In New Orleans it’s so condensed and easy to see, but these same forces of destroying our public housing, destroying public healthcare, destroying public education—those things are happening in every community across this country,” Quigley says. “What is happening in New Orleans is coming to your community.”■ September 18, 2006 The Nation. 27 Parish, nearly 90 percent white, working class and reliably Re - publican, was virtually wiped off the face of the earth. Most of the parish’s housing was destroyed. No hospitals or public libraries have reopened, and only 20 percent of its schools are operating.) The “chocolate city” quip for which Mayor Ray Nagin became notorious nationally was an instance of his scuffling to reassure angry black New Orleanians that he did not endorse the widely touted models of a smaller, whiter city that seemed to follow from his administration’s utterances and practices. And it is revealing of the depth and persistence of many whites’ racial double standards that the Mayor’s affirmation of the goal of retaining a black majority provoked a national and local firestorm of denunciation as narrow and racist, but the many calls for remaking New Orleans as a white-majority city, to which he was ultimately responding, generated no such reaction. But as it turned out, even though the most politically articulate and militant demands stressed the rights of renters [see Chris Kromm, page 22], Nagin’s main policy concession to the protest against the rebuilding proposals was to extend greater latitude to “homeowners.” Thus, in what was supposed to be a victory for popular interests against developers, renters were left out of the equation entirely and established as non-stakeholders. The irony is that blacks were disproportionately renters, and renters were disproportionately black. And roughly 90 percent of rental units destroyed were low-income affordable. Many, no doubt a preponderance, of black homeowners are not affluent, and securing greater civic voice for homeowners democratized the process, if only by slowing down the development juggernaut a bit. Nevertheless, the concession at the same time inscribed property ownership as the condition for entry into the arena of interest groups with effective civic voice.Treating property ownership as the sine qua non for policy consideration didn’t raise any eyebrows locally or nationally, except among the ranks of those who were left out. Neither the black Mayor nor the majority-black City Council has shown initiative in taking into account, much less defending, the interests of poor New Orleanians. The city’s evacuation plans notoriously failed to anticipate adequately poor people’s circumstances and needs. Landlords began evicting tenants without a hint of due process as soon as water receded and rumors spread of possibilities for extracting exorbitant rents from construction workers. The state officially prohibited evictions before October 25, but that prohibition was academic for the tens of thousands of people dispersed in shelters around the region and nation. And even that minimal right was flagrantly ignored with impunity. New Orleans City Council president Oliver Thomas complained in February that government programs and agencies had “pampered” poor people and proclaimed that they should not be encouraged to return. As he put it, “We don’t need soap opera watchers right now.” At least one other black councilmember expressed support of his view, as did the New Orleans Housing Authority receiver .This all attests to the triumph of neoliberalism as both ideology and policy regime, and that triumph is seamlessly compatible with the discourse of racial politics. Black property owners, after all, are stakeholders as well as whites. Demonizing government to cut public spending and regulation, plundering the public treasury through privatization and rationalizing both through the myth of magical market efficiency all underlie what happened to New Orleans. The storm exposed the consequences of neoliberalism’s lies and mystifications, in a single locale and all at once. The levees on the 17th Street and London Avenue canals, it turns out, failed because they were inadequately constructed. In the words of the Independent Levee Investigation Team, “safety was exchanged for efficiency and reduced costs.” This was largely the result of federal underfunding, partly the result of the Army Corps of Engineers’ skimping, partly state and local officials’ temporizing and lack of government oversight or, in neoliberal parlance, cutting government red tape. The breach of the Industrial Canal, and much of the flooding of St. Bernard Parish, resulted from storm surge that pushed up the Mississippi River Gulf Outlet, a boondoggle channel dug four decades ago as corporate welfare that was obsolete almost from its opening.

Whiteness is valued in terms of economics—removing economic value systems prevents racial hierarchies


Bhattacharya 12 (Shilpi, “THE DESIRE FOR WHITENESS: CAN LAW AND ECONOMICS EXPLAIN IT?”, Columbia Journal of Race and Law 2:1, 2012, http://cjrl.columbia.edu/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/The-Desire-for-Whiteness.pdf)//AS

Cheryl Harris describes whiteness as a kind of property, evidenced, for instance, by the attempts of blacks with light skin color to “pass” as white. As she explains it, blacks attempted to pass as white because possessing whiteness meant enjoying various privileges that were exclusively associated with being white.10 Colonization and the slave trade led to the legal construction of blacks as chattel. The exploitation of black slaves contributed to the construction of whiteness as property because, at that time, whiteness represented mastership.11 Therefore, being white was valued in a manner similar to the value associated with the possession of property. In America, the law played a significant role in creating and sustaining the idea of whiteness as property by recognizing the differential rights and privileges of whites.12 Similarly, whiteness was valued in colonial India because whites had privileges that native Indians did not.13 In short, whiteness had value. It was exclusively possessed and, therefore, it was desired. In what way do we value whiteness and how do we measure its value to us?14 Is the value given by individuals to whiteness a factor of the racial identity of that individual? Studies have shown that skin tone has a substantial impact on the way a person is treated in society and affects one’s chances for successful employment and marriage.15 In many societies, skin color is directly associated with social status, and those who are dark-skinned are economically and socially disadvantaged.16 In America, lighter-skinned blacks are reported to face much lower incidences of discrimination than darker-skinned blacks, not only from whites but also from other blacks.17 The literature shows similar effects for darker- skinned persons of other racial categories as well, such as Asians and Latinos.18 In China, there is a

common saying that “white skin can cover 1,000 uglinesses.”19


Racism cannot be uncoupled from capitalism—removing socioeconomic gaps solves racism


Retman 08 (Sonnet H. Associate Professor of African American Studies and Adjunct Associate Professor of Women’s Studies and English at the University of Washington, “Black No More: George Schuyler and Racial Capitalism”, PMLA [ Journal of the Modern Language Association] 123:5, http://www.mlajournals.org.proxy.lib.umich.edu/doi/pdf/10.1632/pmla.2008.123.5.1448)//AS

Black No More is a narrative of passing, part of a genre that subverts basic epistemological assumptions about race and identity. Passing unmasks the juridical, economic, and social structures of race. In particular, it reveals the function of whiteness as a kind of property. The path-breaking scholarship of the critical race theorist Cheryl Harris contends that “the concept of whiteness—established by centuries of custom and codified by law—may be understood as a property interest” (1728). She illustrates the extent to which race cannot be uncoupled from the workings of capitalism. The cultural theorist Valerie Smith offers the important caveat that while racial passing is traditionally coded as a desire to be white, the impetus for passing is often the increased social and economic opportunities that accompany whiteness (“Reading”). If passing centers on the transfer of racial property—usually the seizure of whiteness and its privileges— Fordist technologies of mass production and their ancillary modernist twin, primitivism, give rise to a particular imaginary around the manufacture and exchange of race as commodity. Put differently, Fordism instigates new market possibilities for the trade of racial property in commodity form. Thus, in much New Negro fiction that focuses on passing or primitivism, race is often produced and inscribed through purchasable objects, techniques, and procedures—a kind of “identity prosthesis” that alters the consumer’s body (Nakamura). To amplify this corporeal dimension, the pass is always predicated on some kind of trespass, a fact that underscores the inherent mobility involved in the transaction—specifically, the passer’s reliance on bodily performance in the production of visual narratives of identity. Hence, the performance theorist Amy Robinson suggests that “the apparatus of the pass” should be viewed as a “spectatorial transaction” rather than one that is ontological (721, 726). Not only does passing manufacture whiteness through nonbiological means, it also reveals the ideological foundations of biological race.



Race is used in modernity for economic identification—removing economic status from consideration makes the concept of race useless


Gans 05 (Herbert J., merican sociologist who has taught at Columbia University between 1971 and 2007, “Race as Class”, Contexts 4:4, November 2005, University of Michigan Libraries)//AS

In fact, the skin colors and facial features commonly used to define race are selected precisely because, when arranged hierarchically, they resemble the country’s class-and-status hierarchy. Thus, whites are on top of the socioeconomic pecking order as they are on top of the racial one, while variously shaded nonwhites are below them in socioeconomic position (class) and prestige (status). The darkest people are for the most part at the bottom of the class-status hierarchy. This is no accident, and Americans have therefore always used race as a marker or indicator of both class and status. Sometimes they also use it to enforce class position, to keep some people “in their place.” Indeed, these uses are a major reason for its persistence. Of course, race functions as more than a class marker, and the correlation between race and the socioeconomic pecking order is far from statistically perfect: All races can be found at every level of that order. Still, the race-class correlation is strong enough to utilize race for the general ranking of others. It also becomes more useful for ranking dark-skinned people as white poverty declines so much that whiteness becomes equivalent to being middle or upper class. The relation between race and class is unmistakable. For example, the l998–2000 median household income of non- Hispanic whites was $45,500; of Hispanics (currently seen by many as a race) as well as Native Americans, $32,000; and of African Americans, $29,000. The poverty rates for these same groups were 7.8 percent among whites, 23.1 among Hispanics, 23.9 among blacks, and 25.9 among Native Americans. (Asians’ median income was $52,600—which does much to explain why we see them as a model minority.)


Focus on Cap Solves Root of Racism



A focus on capitalism is key to solving the root cause of racism

a) Racism is grounded in capitalism - the slave trade was a purely economic trade - it dictated the flow of commodities including food, metals and people. This was done for profit for personal gain - they were grounded in the profit motive mindset. In the colonial US, white people were used for labor but the seemingly racist transition to the use of African slaves was for purely economic reasons

b) Capitalism comes first - the alt is a prerequisite to getting rid of racism - elites in their evil, profit driven ways will continue to exploit their workers in a “racial” way if they can make perceived benefits from it. The only way to fix this problem is to ensure an ethical world with true equality - without getting rid of capitalism, the case fails

Racism is not inherent—it is a policy creation that can be dismantled by policy

Bouie 13 (Jamelle, staff writer at The American Prospect, “Making (and Dismantling) Racism”, The American Prospect, 3/11/13, http://prospect.org/article/making-and-dismantling-racism)//AS

Over at The Atlantic, Ta-NehisiCoates has been exploring the intersection of race and public policy, with a focus on white supremacy as a driving force in political decisions at all levels of government. This has led him to two conclusions: First, that anti-black racism as we understand it is a creation of explicit policy choicesthe decision to exclude, marginalize, and stigmatize Africans and their descendants has as much to do with racial prejudice as does any intrinsic tribalism. And second, that it's possible to dismantle this prejudice using public policy. Here is Coates in his own words: Last night I had the luxury of sitting and talking with the brilliant historian Barbara Fields. One point she makes that very few Americans understand is that racism is a creation. You read Edmund Morgan’s work and actually see racism being inscribed in the law and the country changing as a result. If we accept that racism is a creation, then we must then accept that it can be destroyed. And if we accept that it can be destroyed, we must then accept that it can be destroyed by us and that it likely must be destroyed by methods kin to creation. Racism was created by policy. It will likely only be ultimately destroyed by policy. Over at his blog, Andrew Sullivan offers a reply: I don’t believe the law created racism any more than it can create lust or greed or envy or hatred. It can encourage or mitigate these profound aspects of human psychology – it can create racist structures as in the Jim Crow South or Greater Israel. But it can no more end these things that it can create them. A complementary strategy is finding ways for the targets of such hatred to become inured to them, to let the slurs sting less until they sting not at all. Not easy. But a more manageable goal than TNC’s utopianism. I can appreciate the point Sullivan is making, but I'm not sure it's relevant to Coates' argument. It is absolutely true that "Group loyalty is deep in our DNA," as Sullivan writes. And if you define racism as an overly aggressive form of group loyalty—basically just prejudice—then Sullivan is right to throw water on the idea that the law can "create racism any more than it can create lust or greed or envy or hatred." But Coates is making a more precise claim: That there's nothing natural about the black/white divide that has defined American history. White Europeans had contact with black Africans well before the trans-Atlantic slave tradewithout the emergence of an anti-black racism. It took particular choices made by particular people—in this case, plantation owners in colonial Virginia—to make black skin a stigma, to make the "one drop rule" a defining feature of American life for more than a hundred years. By enslaving African indentured servants and allowing their white counterparts a chance for upward mobility, colonial landowners began the process that would make white supremacy the ideology of America. The position of slavery generated a stigma that then justified continued enslavement—blacks are lowly, therefore we must keep them as slaves. Slavery (and later, Jim Crow) wasn't built to reflect racism as much as it was built in tandem with it. And later policy, in the late 19th and 20th centuries, further entrenched white supremacist attitudes. Block black people from owning homes, and they're forced to reside in crowded slums. Onlookers then use the reality of slums to deny homeownership to blacks, under the view that they're unfit for suburbs. In other words, create a prohibition preventing a marginalized group from engaging in socially sanctioned behavior—owning a home, getting married—and then blame them for the adverse consequences. Indeed, in arguing for gay marriage and responding to conservative critics, Sullivan has taken note of this exact dynamic. Here he is twelve years ago, in a column for The New Republicthat builds on earlier ideas: Gay men--not because they're gay but because they are men in an all-male subculture--are almost certainly more sexually active with more partners than most straight men. (Straight men would be far more promiscuous, I think, if they could get away with it the way gay guys can.) Many gay men value this sexual freedom more than the stresses and strains of monogamous marriage (and I don't blame them). But this is not true of all gay men. Many actually yearn for social stability, for anchors for their relationships, for the family support and financial security that come with marriage. To deny this is surely to engage in the "soft bigotry of low expectations." They may be a minority at the moment. But with legal marriage, their numbers would surely grow. And they would function as emblems in gay culture of a sexual life linked to stability and love. [Emphasis added] What else is this but a variation on Coates' core argument, that society can create stigmas by using law to force particular kinds of behavior? Insofar as gay men were viewed as unusually promiscuous, it almost certainly had something to do with the fact that society refused to recognize their humanity and sanction their relationships. The absence of any institution to mediate love and desire encouraged behavior that led this same culture to say "these people are too degenerate to participate in this institution." If the prohibition against gay marriage helped create an anti-gay stigma, then lifting it—as we've seen over the last decade—has helped destroy it. There's no reason racism can't work the same way.

Analyzing race in terms of capital is essential—it operates in society via valuation

Leong 13 (Nancy, Assistant Professor of Civil Rights ,Constitutional Law, and Criminal Procedure at the University of Denver, “Racial Capitalism”, Harvard Law Review 126:8, June 2013, Infotrac)//AS

More importantly, however, the characteristics associated with both traditional and contemporary understandings of property do not capture some of the implications of the way that nonwhiteness is currently assigned value. Therefore, a more useful lens for understanding the value assigned to nonwhiteness is that of capital. (108) Capital has been theorized in many forms. One of the most influential theories is Karl Marx's critique, rooted in political economy, of the relationship between private property, accumulated wealth, and exploitative social relations. (109) Subsequent theorists have posited other kinds of capital. Theodore Schultz introduced the notion of human capital -- the value added to a laborer when the laborer acquires education, skills, training, knowledge, or other attributes that improve her usefulness in the process of producing and exchanging goods. (110) Pierre Bourdieu later distinguished among several forms of capital, including economic capital, cultural capital, social capital, and symbolic capital. (111) Catherine Hakim has developed the idea of erotic capital as a mechanism for furthering both social and economic interests through sexual attractiveness. (112) In many contexts, then, scholars have found the lens of capital a useful way of examining particular phenomena. In the analysis I develop in this Article, existing theories of capital serve as heuristics for understanding the way that race is valued and the way that racial value is exchanged. There are undeniable differences between economic and racial markets, and so I do not claim that the analogy to any given theory of capital is a perfect explanation for the dynamics of racial value. But as a means to understand how race is valued -- and in particular how nonwhiteness is valued -- the various theories of capital provide useful frameworks for thinking about both that process of valuation and about how racial identity consequently functions in markets, economic and otherwise. Theories of capital thus clarify several aspects of the valuation of nonwhiteness. For example, conceptions of social capital further illustrate the reasons thatnonwhiteness has value to white people and predominantly white institutions. Relatedly, social capital provides an understanding of the way that racial value is transferred through interaction and affiliation. These ideas then provide the basis for understanding the process of exploitation and profit that Marxian theories of capital illuminate. That is, the question is not simply who "possesses" racial identity, but also who reaps value from it, and conceiving of nonwhiteness as capital helps to illustrate this process of exploitation and profit. The Marxian capital framework likewise highlights the dynamism of the value assigned to racial identity -- that is, how the value of racial identity fluctuates depending on the situation. The Marxian capital framework also allows for a more transparent examination of who, precisely, derives value from nonwhiteness. And perhaps most importantly, the framework exposes the imbalance in power that frames the valuation of nonwhiteness.

Focus on Race Does Not Solve Capitalism



Focusing on race does not solve for capitalism

1)It fails -  if we continue to focus on race, we cannot unite together against capitalism. A focus on race means a focus on our differences and not our similarities. The aff fails to create an effective social movement and actual change. The alt precludes aff solvency

2) Defeating capitalism requires us to unite- In order to defeat capitalism we all need to be united as one to work against capitalism. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts, in order to be successful in defeating the inequalities of capitalism including race, the social movement created by the alt comes first


Racism is a creation of policy and can only be destroyed by engaging with the state

Coates 13 (Ta-nehesi, senior editor at The Atlantic,“Good People, Racist People”, The Atlantic, 3/8/13, http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/03/good-people-racist-people/273843/)//AS

The "I'm not racist even though I'm doing something actually racist right now" rationale is linked to the notion of racism as something worthy of societal condemnation. That is a good thing. As Sugrue identifies in his book, you see a post-World-War-II consensus forming in the 1950s that racial discrimination actually is wrong.  Along with that (perhaps in the 60s) comes the idea that racism is something that "low-class" white people do. It's not a system of laws and policies, so much as the ideology of Cletus the slack-jawed yokel. But Arnold Hirsch and Beryl Satter's work shows the University of Chicago quietly and privately pursuing a racist strategy of "urban renewal" while publicly claiming otherwise.  None of this is new. It's akin to proto-Confederates loudly and lustily defending slavery, daring the North to war before 1865, and then afterward claiming that the war really wasn't about slavery. The point is to save face.  Last night I had the luxury of sitting and talking with the brilliant historian Barbara Fields. One point she makes that very few Americans understand is that racism is a creation.You read Edmund Morgan's workand actually see racism being inscribed in the law and the country changing as a result.  If we accept that racism is a creation, then we must then accept that it can be destroyed. And if we accept that it can be destroyed, we must then accept that it can be destroyed by us and that it likely must be destroyed by methods kin to creation. Racism was created by policy. It will likely only be ultimately destroyed by policy.  That is hard to take. If Forrest Whitaker sticks out in that deli for reasons of individual mortal sin, we can castigate the guy who frisked him and move on. But if he -- and others like him -- stick out for reasons of policy, for decisions that we, as a state, have made, then we have a problem. Then we have to do something beyond being nice to each other.


Racism is not the product of individual evil but societal-level norms reinforced through economics

Coates 13 (Ta-nehesi, senior editor at The Atlantic, “The Good, Racist People”, The New York Times, 3/6/13, http://www.nytimes.com/2013/03/07/opinion/coates-the-good-racist-people.html?src=me&ref=general&_r=0)

The idea that racism lives in the heart of particularly evil individuals, as opposed to the heart of a democratic society, is reinforcing to anyone who might, from time to time, find their tongue sprinting ahead of their discretion. We can forgive Whitaker’s assailant. Much harder to forgive is all that makes Whitaker stand out in the first place. New York is a city, like most in America, that bears the scars of redlining, blockbusting and urban renewal. The ghost of those policies haunts us in a wealth gap between blacks and whites that has actually gotten worse over the past 20 years. But much worse, it haunts black people with a kind of invisible violence that is given tell only when the victim happens to be an Oscar winner. The promise of America is that those who play by the rules, who observe the norms of the “middle class,” will be treated as such. But this injunction is only half-enforced when it comes to black people, in large part because we were never meant to be part of the American story. Forest Whitaker fits that bill, and he was addressed as such. I am trying to imagine a white president forced to show his papers at a national news conference, and coming up blank. I am trying to a imagine a prominent white Harvard professor arrested for breaking into his own home, and coming up with nothing. I am trying to see Sean Penn or Nicolas Cage being frisked at an upscale deli, and I find myself laughing in the dark. It is worth considering the messaging here. It says to black kids: “Don’t leave home. They don’t want you around.” It is messaging propagated by moral people.
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