Racism towards...

Racism - The belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, esp. so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.

I’ve always felt that if you are racist, you are racist.

I don’t know why it bothers the crap out of me to hear someone say “They’re racist toward black people”.

You can’t be racist toward?

You can only be racist… right?

what do you mean?

He means that racism is “the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, esp. so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races” - that it’s that particular belief, and not just something like not liking Pakistanis. He seems to be emphasizing it as a philosophical position rather than a character defect or personality trait.

Your explanation didn’t help, anon.

It sounds to me like he’s saying that one can’t have a prejudice against a specific race. Is that accurate?

OH WAIT, I GET IT NOW!
You’re saying that either you believe that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, esp. so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races, or you don’t believe it. Those are the two options. So either someone is racist or they are not racist.

But that’s not the only definition of racism. If it were, your OP would be right and the phrase “I’m racist towards black people” would be nonsensical.
However, here’s another definition: hatred or intolerance of another race or other races.
Using that definition, when someone says “I’m racist towards X race,” they’re saying “I have hatred for or intolerance of X race”

No.

Take pre civil war south US. Noting what I bolded above, racism would primarily involve ideas comparing whites to blacks, deciding the latter were not as good and justifying various practices.

Racism also mean number three and is often used this way by, well, humans.

You’re racist or you’re not. Racist is toward every race but your own. Not toward a certain group. That is prejudice.

no, it’s also racist. racist and prejudiced are not mutually exclusive. if everybody’s using a word a certain way and you’re the only one who’s not, i think it’s worth looking into the possibility that you’re just wrong…cuz that’s a pretty good possibility.

Oh how it offends me to be wrong about an argument over the meaning of a word :confused:

All sarcasm aside, language is, for the most part, based on how people use it. A dictionary isn’t the final say on the meaning of the word; it’s use is (not that the dictionary contradicts it’s use in this case anyway).

Various members of my ancestral family had a fear of, and an antipathy toward the African-American race. I don’t know why, since the circumstances of their lives, in detail, aren’t really known. Is the question one of word usage of ‘toward’ as a preposition as I’ve just used it and as it has been used in the OP? Or is that word not in question?

Were various members of my ancestral family ‘racist’–an adjective–or ‘racist’–a noun. Both if those usages imply a sort of universality that would encompass anyone who had an outward appearance that was different than theirs–skin color, eye shape, nose size, place of origin, religion–anything and everything that sets a people apart from another person. I make that distinction because a racist implies a single person.

so if someone doesn’t like someone else because their nose is too big, that person is a racist?

That would be a featurist.

Nope, number three from my post above…

You can define racism to mean what you mean and try to get other people to use it that way, but right now you are referring to a word that is not simply defined the way you use it.

But let’s say you are correct, what would be the conclusion?

You’re being silly. On the other hand, yes. It depends on the context. We were at a party a couple of weeks ago. I said something very innocently, meaning to be droll, to a friend about another mutual friend. Her answer was to place her finger against her nose and say something like, “That’s to be expected, isn’t it?”

Since the first neighbors are Jewish, I’d say the indications are the second neighbor has an antip0athy toward Jews. I must say, it surprised the hell out of me. It was nothing I would ever have anticipated.

In my naivete, I thought that people would be done with such feelings.

Thats not necessarily racist it’s Racialist. I believe Racism is when you believe your “Race” is superior to all others in all supossed meaningful ways.