Explained: Is Reverse Racism A Myth Or Not?

Reverse Racism

intolerance or prejudice directed at members of historically dominant racial groups.

Simply typing the term ‘Reverse Racism’ into your Twitter search bar will give you all the evidence you need that this is an incredibly controversial subject.

The idea that a minority race can be called racist has caused countless arguments and debates online.


What is Reverse Racism?

If you are not a regular twitter user or don’t tend to keep up with current affairs you maybe confused at the term ‘reverse racism’.


The English Oxford Living Dictionary describes reverse racism as,

(noun) Prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism on the basis of race directed against a member of a dominant or privileged racial group.

The idea that a historically oppressed race can now become the ‘oppressor’ may seem impossible to some people- but others disagree and think this is an issue.


Where did this ‘issue’ come from?

You don’t need to look through history books to know that racism has been a problem for many years globally- and still is to this day. For as long as humans have been around, the idea of prejudice and discrimination has too. Racism remains one of the most generic forms of oppression in our modern day. From historic events such as the African slave trade, to police brutality in America there is no arguing that racism isn’t a massive part of society.

But what about when it is turned on its head?

Reverse racism really came to light online in 2013 following the ‘Black Lives Matter’ vs. ‘All Lives Matter’ argument. Following the murders of several unarmed black individuals in America by police, the Black Lives Matter movement was born. This protest took over our social media as people across the globe objected to the police brutality.

However, the drive soon faced criticism as the twitter hashtag ‘All Lives Matter’ soon appeared. The All Lives Matter campaign works to argue that every human life, not just those of black people, should be given equal consideration. Many celebrity’s and people in the public eye took to twitter to show their support. The likes of Donald Trump and Piers Morgan both received backlash following their use of the hashtag.

Many people argued that despite wanting equality for ALL lives, it was the black lives movement that we were focusing on and needed support at this time, and this was taking away attention from the original movement.


Why is this such a controversial subject?

The term ‘racist’ is not a term to be used lightly and can understandably cause people to get defensive no matter what the situation.

Speaking to twitter user Maddy ,21, from California, she had some very strong views.

“Personally, I do not believe in reverse racism. Racism is an institutional system built from power. And that power is something that Black people and other People of Color do not have in the current society we live in.

Calling a white person like, mayonnaise or something is just generally mean. But the power behind it is different to racism.

In no way am I saying that people of colour cannot hate others, because hatred is a universal emotion, but racism is hatred mixed with centuries of oppression by white people. To put it simply, reverse racism doesn’t exist because it wasn’t Black people that forced white people from their homes and sold them for centuries. We did not go to war over if keeping you as property was fine or not.


The other side.

Despite many twitter users and many articles online totally disagree at the existence of this, some people do believe you can receive racist abuse as a white person.

Some people believe that this form of racism can be seen across a wide range of our media, such as films, music and tv shows. Films such as Get Out, Bring It On and TV series’ Power and Dear White People have all been criticized for racism, whether this through language, themes or character traits.


Canterbury Christchurch Student Brooke Sargent, 21, believes she experienced a racist attack while in her place of work.

“I work in Topshop and I was at work one day and the alarm went off for the security barrier where a white lady was leaving the store. It wasn’t my job to be checking the bags at this point, it was my colleagues who was standing by the doors, so I did not approach the customer who was leaving the store.

I over heard another lady saying something, so I looked up and noticed that she was looking directly at me saying something along the lines of ‘this is white power.’

Personally I think although racism is very real, it isn’t down to one particular race. I don’t agree with the term ‘reverse racism’ because I believe that people of any race are capable of being offensive to another with the intent to hurt them. I understand that as a white female that I probably won’t witness racism as much as women of other races may have/will, but it still happens and any form of racism is disgusting.”


Whether you believe in ‘reverse racism’ or not, the topic is not going away anytime soon. Even if everyone did come to the conclusion that we can’t call abuse given to a ‘politically dominating’ group ‘racism’, the main focus should be to reduce all discrimination.