#BLM: It’s a mistake to think more and better racism will help – IRR

21 July 2020 - ‘The mistake in BLM ideology is not that racism doesn’t exist. It does. The mistake is to think more and better racism will help the situation.’

‘The mistake in BLM ideology is not that racism doesn’t exist. It does. The mistake is to think more and better racism will help the situation.’

This is the core message in the report released today by the Institute of Race Relations (IRR), Because #BlackLivesMatter, What institutions need to know about the BLM Global Network, and of the online briefing this morning with the author, IRR analyst and researcher Gabriel Crouse.

The report analyses the origins, ideology and strategies of the BLM movement, and dwells in detail on analyses of claims of racial bias in policing in the United States, and the self-professed Marxist ideological underpinnings of the movement itself.

Crouse writes: “Given BLM’s indifference to facts, its demonstrably horrific effects, and its 19th century German ideology of inhumanism, its animus to wealth, and its call for total social upheaval, one may wonder why South African private institutions would throw their endorsement BLM’s way.”

In this morning’s briefing, Crouse noted that, as a slogan, BLM was “sound” in the sense that it acknowledged the rights to dignity and equality of all who fell within the black “subset” of people, and that it could draw “special attention to such people wherever the contrary seems to be the case”.

But behind the slogan was an organised international movement with an ideological agenda based on asserting racialism and spurning non-racialism.

He cautioned organisations that had embraced or were tempted to embrace #BLM that the ideological thrust of the movement “forces you to divide the guilty and the innocent by race”, and the “reforms [urged by BLM] were impossible to satisfy without destroying your own institutions”.

“Nothing you do to try to bring yourself closer to BLM will be enough, and if you do not nullify yourself and destroy your institution – whether a school or dental practice – it will only prove that you are racist, and creates more attention for BLM.”

Crouse said: “We published this report to help people think clearly about how they can contribute to a better, freer society and to non-racialism around the world. There are two ways of dealing with a society whose salient cleavages are racial.

“One is BLM, which is more racism, but of a different kind. The other, which has not been getting a lot of attention, is non-racialism.”

Crouse added: “The mistake is judging people on the basis of race in the first place. Non-racialism has proved to be the most potent means of tackling problems in every society that has taken it up. It is the basis of a productive society that is reason-sensitive to what really matters. On this basis, there is no challenge that cannot be solved.”

At the end of the briefing, IRR deputy head of policy research Hermann Pretorius noted that, over the coming weeks, the IRR would proactively engage with organisations which had come under pressure from the BLM movement with a view to having “honest, compassionate discussions as a way of working towards solutions”.

“South Africans have shown themselves to be commonsensical, decent people. If you want a non-racial society where argument effects real change, there is no population that is better placed to achieve it than South Africa’s,” he said. 

Media contacts:
Gabriel Crouse: 082 510 0360 | gabriel@irr.org.za
Hermann Pretorius: 079 875 4290 | hermann@irr.org.za

Media enquiries:
Michael Morris: 066 302 1968 | michael@irr.org.za
Kelebogile Leepile: 079 051 0073 | kelebogile@irr.org.za