In regard to “Other’s Racism” (PDN, May 27):
True, America did not use slaves to build the Colosseum or the Parthenon, but since both of these examples were built over 2,000 years ago, I’m not sure how that has any relevance to current American society.
Even before the American slave trade started, this “great and mighty nation” was not uninhabited when the first settlers landed.
What followed could easily be compared to any of the atrocities you list.
Those European slave traders didn’t engage in this activity because they were philanthropists.
They did so because there were Americans willing to pay to own people.
To be sure, there was slave labor involved in the construction of the wealth of the American South.
There were slaves involved in the construction of the American White House.
Then there was that pesky Civil War, fought to end slavery because some people thought it was OK to buy and sell people in America.
Fifty years after that war ended, there was a massacre in Tulsa that ruined the accumulated wealth of an entire black community.
During World War II, all the Japanese, including American citizens, were interned for the duration of the war.
Guess what happened to their wealth and businesses when the war was over?
These are fairly recent examples of blatant racism in our society.
The fact that you, personally, do not own another person, or have not killed anyone lately does not guarantee that you are not racist.