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Thread: Census

  1. #1

    Default Census

    Got the census form in the mail yesterday.

    Am I the only one that thinks questions 8 and especially 9 are racist? What difference does it make to the government (or anyone else....) what color my skin is or how my eyes slant?

    I could sort of understand if they asked what language is spoken in the residence, but "race"? I thought we were past that.

  2. #2

    Default

    It's just for statistics, so no, it isn't racist. It's only racist if they then discriminate against you (or anyone else) based upon how you answer.

  3. #3

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Badger View Post
    It's just for statistics, so no, it isn't racist. It's only racist if they then discriminate against you (or anyone else) based upon how you answer.
    True dat!

    They need to know the demographics of a population in order to cater to them correctly.

  4. #4

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by talula View Post
    True dat!

    They need to know the demographics of a population in order to cater to them correctly.

    Age, location, sex, own or rent, population density, all valid stats. I'll even give you language spoken in the home (which they didn't ask....). Skin color implies that the government thinks that makes a difference, hence the government is racist.

  5. #5

    Default

    Not really. Skin colour does make a difference.

    You're race matters, and skin colour makes up a part of that. Are you white South African or black South African? That makes a difference to your race and genetic make-up.

    People who have different skin colours are more susceptible to different illnesses and diseases, especially skin disorders. If they don't know how many people are likely to suffer from these problems then they can't put the provisions in place to treat them.

  6. #6

    Default

    I wrote in race as an american, I don't care if your white, black, blue, or green your still an american

  7. #7

    Default

    Hmm, is American a race? If I moved to America and then got a census, could I put in 'Canadian' as my race?

  8. #8

    Default

    I don't see how you could interpret this as racist. The purpose of the census is so the government can get a demographic of the population, so they can cater for people's needs accordingly.

    It's only racist if they then increase your tax rate because you're black (or other specified ethnic minority.) As others have said, some races are actually more likely to get certain illnesses, so knowing how many people are more likely to get a certain illness can help the proper distribution of funds.

    I'm not saying that you don't understand this, but just to clarify:
    Saying "Person X is a black South African" is not racist if the context is merely for description or statistics sake.
    Saying "Person X is scum because they are a black South African" is racist.

    Racism depends on context, unfortunately a surprising number of people appear to think using the word black in any context is racist.

  9. #9
    Peachy

    Default

    By your definition, people who look at another person are racist, simply because they would notice what race the other person is. If I look at an Asian, I immediatly notice that she's Asian. Same with black people, white people etc.
    That's what the Census is doing too - just counting people who belong to a certain race. That's like counting black, white, Asian etc. people on a city bus when you get on. You sound like it's a bad thing to do! Racism in that situation would be actively choosing to sit next to a white rather than an Asian/black etc. person because you're uncomfortable sitting next to non-whites, but not simply noticing the fact that races exist and how many people belong to the different races.

    Peachy

  10. #10

    Default



    Quote Originally Posted by Peachy View Post
    By your definition, people who look at another person are racist, simply because they would notice what race the other person is. If I look at an Asian, I immediatly notice that she's Asian. Same with black people, white people etc.
    That's what the Census is doing too - just counting people who belong to a certain race. That's like counting black, white, Asian etc. people on a city bus when you get on. You sound like it's a bad thing to do! Racism in that situation would be actively choosing to sit next to a white rather than an Asian/black etc. person because you're uncomfortable sitting next to non-whites, but not simply noticing the fact that races exist and how many people belong to the different races.

    Peachy
    Funny story to go with this. My brother hangs out with a lot of racist people. One time he was in the mall and he hears his friend counting, but kind of slowly, like every ten or so steps he's go up one. Finally a black guy walks up to him and goes "Why are you counting all the black people?". It turns out that that is what he was ACTUALLY doing. I think he almost got his face punched in. He would have deserved it.

    Have you ever seen the episode of House: MD where a black man is diagnosed with sickle cell anemia and he asks for "the white man's medicine"? Well the issue arose that only black people can HAVE sickle cell anemia. It is prevalent in Africa because people with sickle cell anemia can fare better against malaria. Sometimes knowing a person's skin colour can make a difference in a positive way. People who jump to conclusions that everything is racist need to cool off.

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