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DAVIDSON: Light & Dark Are Ancient Constructs

The following article, DAVIDSON: Light & Dark Are Ancient Constructs, was first published on Flag And Cross.

The Biden Administration wasted no time in seeking to undermine and dismantle the “1776 Project,” which was designed to offer a balanced perspective on American history. Meanwhile the Administration supports the misdirected “1619 Project,” which is intended to fan the flames of racial dissonance.

From the New York Times: “The 1619 Project is an ongoing initiative from The New York Times Magazine that began in August 2019, the 400th anniversary of the beginning of American slavery. It aims to reframe the country’s history by placing the consequences of slavery and the contributions of black Americans at the very center of our national narrative.”

Is It Human Nature?

In the midst of this wrangling, one aspect of interracial understanding and relations has been virtually overlooked, for decades, if not longer… I was watching television, years back, in a Washington, D.C. hotel room, the night before I was scheduled to give a speech.

A news feature on a local animal shelter revealed the preferences among dog adopters. Light-colored and multi-colored dogs are popular. The darker the dog, the longer it stays in the shelter. Black dogs are the least popular and have the hardest time attracting an owner.

All of the anthropological, sociological, and human behavior books and articles I had ever read leapt forward in my memory. When selecting a pet, if black fur is the least desirable, is there an implication for a dark-skinned person in this world? Are they born to a life of inherent bias, even when others firmly seek to avoid being prejudiced?

Blinded by the Night

Is it hardwired for human nature to be attracted to light and be repelled by dark? Light, white, and mild colors are traditionally equated with positive attributes, while dark often is not. Such pairings are primarily subconscious, likely persisting in the human psyche for thousands of years.

Diversity is the fate of species everywhere, not simply on earth. If life is ever discovered on distant planets, the variation in human appearances will more than likely be mirrored by wide variation in whatever species populate those celestial bodies. It’s our ongoing challenge to rise above physiological differences and even the resulting psycho-physiological variations in human behavior, outlook, and disposition. Individually and collectively, we have the ability. It is within our grasp.

Behavior Matters

As we acknowledge our ancient, inherent bias away from dark, and toward light, we must recognize that discrimination should not be attributed to skin color. What is at issue, and is seldom discussed in the mainstream media, is the effect of a person’s behavior on another person. Martin Luther King Jr. said it best, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”

Author Shelby Steele has written such insightful books as White Guilt: How Blacks and Whites Together Destroyed the Promise of the Civil Rights Era; The Content of Our Character: A New Vision of Race In America; and A Dream Deferred: The Second Betrayal of Black Freedom in America. He eloquently argues that often, those who claim that they’re being discriminated against because of skin color, claim little or no responsibility for their behavior.

Black or white or anything else, If you attend public schools for grades 1 to 12 and learn precious little, largely because you didn’t pay attention in class, thought it was cool to goof off, didn’t see the value in conjugating a verb, felt that science was boring, or disdained learning in general, why blame others?

If you can’t seem to enter the economic mainstream and land the kind of job you want, at the salary you want, who is to blame? A vanishing throng of ‘discriminatory’ employers who don’t hire you because of skin color? Or, discerning employers who don’t hire you because of your academic underachievement, which renders you as under-qualified?

Humans Discriminate Based on Behavior

Discrimination based on skin color is a grave offense and morally corrupt. Discrimination based on behavior is something that all human beings have done since the beginning of time and to this day, and will continue 1000+ years into the future.

It behooves each of us, daily, to do our best, to relegate skin color as non-issue, while recognizing that behavior, along with aptitude, performance, and results in the workplace, are the measures most vital to employers.

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