I thought about this the other day, while having nothing to do, as usual. Aren’t we all racists ? Can we truly be comfortable around people from different races, cultures, religions, origins, etc etc without a single iota of apprehension? Why, when put together in a group, would we slowly drift towards our own, rather than just blend in? And do we view those, who do blend in, with a certain degree of alertness?
Us Mizos, say that we are discriminated against when we move outside the state, that non-NE indians ridicule us and sometimes make life a bit more challenging. But when I go back home, isn’t that what we do to non-Mizos? We may argue that, No, we treat them better, we have good non-mizo friends inside Mizoram, but I’m sure we all have good friends outside the state as well. The point which i’m trying to make here is “We may think we are better off, but that’s exactly what makes us racists!”
“Racism, by its simplest definition, is the belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race. People with racist beliefs might hate certain groups of people according to their racial groups.” (Wikipedia)
In Mizoram, when an unfamiliar name comes up during any conversation, the usual and normally accepted reaction is “Vai maw?!”, more out of distaste, rather than surprise. We pride ourselves in being an open society, reflecting the best of the western culture, when in reality, we dont exactly come with open arms to embrace anyone beyond the border. True, we are hospitable to guests, and thats our culture and Im proud of it too, but we ought to be more approachable by others outside our community. The world is being seperated on grounds of religion, culture, race, sexuality, etc and it will happen to be so. Amidst the chaos, we can choose to be what we are. Its alright being a racist, we can’t help it, but above all, let’s embrace humanity and the power of Will to be united, as a state, as a country, as a continent and most importantly, as people of this world.