Racism Is a Social Problem


Part of that approach would involve promoting collaboration of youth and police agencies in the education system rather than attempting to resolve negative perceptions after the fact. Naturally, greater sensitivity on the part of government institutions to the justified complaints of civilians is essential to that approach.

Response to Post # 4

While I certainly agree that addressing the various risks posed by terrorists is one of the most important concerns of contemporary government, I would suggest that the traditional approach of using military resources to protect physical borders is likely to be insufficient because it is outdated. First, the growing trend among international terrorists is to promote attacks by decentralized organizations without any affiliation to groups that can be combated through traditional applications of force. In many cases, international terrorist groups rely on the Internet to recruit and indoctrinate prospective terrorists who operate from within the national borders of nations and, increasingly, as "lone-wolf"-types of terrorists.

Second, and perhaps more importantly, the greatest international threat today is likely to be executed through asymmetric types of warfare that permit hostile nations and major terrorist groups to attack larger and much better equipped nations with whose military forces they could never fight through traditional military means. In that regard, the greatest terrorism and asymmetric warfare operations are conducted through the cyber medium and, increasingly, by infiltrating and attacking computer systems responsible for maintaining non-military operations such as civilian monetary institutions and municipal systems upon which modern society depends. While continued military capabilities with respect to physical borders are still important, the emphasis for the future defense against terrorism should probably focus on protecting the computer system infrastructure such as municipal electrical power systems from attack through the cyber medium.

Response to Post # 5

I would completely agree with your emphasis on cultural awareness and the reduction of cultural imperialism and relativism as some of the most important ways of improving contemporary society. As I have suggested in other post responses in a slightly different context, the most effective way of improving the interrelations of local communities as well as global communities is to focus on preventing the formation of prejudicial beliefs and attitudes very early in the socialization process. By comparison, trying to reduce their prevalence and their effects after those attitudes and beliefs have already become established in the individual and within communities (at every level) is much less likely to be successful than preventing their formation in the first place through the socialization process.

Response to Post # 6

Your post illustrates some of the more extreme ways that human rights are still denied in contemporary societies. However, it is unlikely that direct pressure on oppressive governments from other nations will succeed in making the types of changes that are necessary to support human rights in those nations. In principle, social change must come from the people within any society such as recently witnessed in connection with the so-called "Arab Spring" in several Middle Eastern nations. In my opinion, the most effective approach on the part of other nations will be to support and promote social change movements that originate within the populations of oppressive regimes. Iran, as you point out, is a perfect example of a nation whose population has traditionally opposed any intervention by the West to promote democracy but whose population is currently demanding greater democracy on their own. Western nations cannot hope to inspire such changes where they do not already exist within foreign populations. However, increased globalization and (especially) the increased availability of digital media provide opportunities to help naturally-occurring revolutions…