It is another September 21 and the world is already rejoicing, in commemoration of another International Day of Peace. The day is set aside by the United Nations (UN) to mark ceasefire from all forms of violent conflicts and embrace peace.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) explained that the Day was established in 1981 by the United Nations General Assembly. Twenty years later, in 2001, the General Assembly decided, by unanimous vote, that this would be a day of non-violence and ceasefire.
Apart from the various threats to peace, one of the most delicate ones is the ongoing war between two neighbours and former one country, Russia and Ukraine. The war had been going on for over eight years, with a full-blown invasion that has lasted for about seven months. Such is a threat to international peace and has the tendency of involving other countries. Peace, as the United Nations has emphasized, is crucial to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal vision for 2030.
This year’s celebration focuses on racism, with the theme, “End racism. Build peace.” Racism has continued to bring disunity across the globe. This is because, racism promotes hate. The United Nations has always stated its commitment to ending hate by promoting the enactment of anti-hate speech laws.
Racism is generally, “prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism by an individual, community, or institution against a person or people on the basis of their membership of a particular racial or ethnic group, typically one that is a minority or marginalized.” Although there are many ethnic and racial backgrounds in the world, the four major races include Negroid, Caucasoid, Mongoloid and Australoid. Each of these races has its distinctive features.
A Race is a “group of people with similar, permanent distinguishing characteristics. People belonging to a particular race, skin and hair colour have certain interpretations. The classification of racial groups should be done on the basis of characteristics, and physical features inherited from a common ancestor”, according to Pravin Babu.
The Negroid, also called Negros, are represented by the African people. They are also called woolen haired people. There are several sub-races of Negros also including Aborigines, Melanesians, Negritos, Papuans, Dravidians etc. They also include a number of tribes such as Nilotic, Bantu, Sudanic, Pygmy, Khosian etc. Most striking feature of Negroids is dark skin due to dense pigmentation, coarse black and wavy hair.
They have wide noses and foreheads, broad, often thick lips, large built and broad skeletal structure. These people have stamina and ability to survive in very adverse environmental conditions, including severe heat. The dense pigmentation adapts them to strong heat and sun of equatorial regions in which this race originated. Hottentots and Bushmen are two major groups of Negroid people.
Chinese and Japanese are the key representatives of the Mongoloid people. They are also called straight haired people. The Amerinds (Native American Indians) are supposed to be an early offshoot while the Polynesians are a sub-group of the Mongoloids with a great deal of racial intermixture. Thus Mongoloid group has vast and diverse geographical distribution and so “Asians” seems to be more suitable term for them. The sub-races of Mongoloids include East Asian, North Asian and Native American.
The striking feature of Mongoloids is yellowish or light wheatish skin, extremely straight and black hair, very less hair growth upon their bodies, small, almond-shaped eyes, slight built, very lean musculature and small but clear facial features. They can also be divided into Neo-Mongoloids and Paleo-Mongoloids also. Neo-Mongoloids include ethnic groups such as Eskimos, Buryats, Chinese, Chukchis etc. They have extremely mongoloid features. The Paleo-Mongoloids include ethnic groups such as Polynesians, Filipinos, Burmese, some Native American people etc.
Caucasoid includes people from Europe, North Africa, the Horn of Africa, Western Asia (the Middle East), parts of Central Asia and South Asia. The term Caucasian was initially a geographical term denoting the Caucasus region (Caucasia) of central Eurasia. However, later the word got many meanings including one of the races of humans.
The Caucasoid are further classified into various sub-races such as Aryans (including some Indo-Europeans), Semitic (Arabs and Israelis) Hamitic (Berber-Cushitic-Egyptian races), Nordic, Mediterranean, Dinaric, Alpine, Arabid, East Baltic, Turanid, Iranid, Armenoid and so on. Each of these sub-races is based on some geographic location.
The people of Caucasian and its sub-races have white skin color ranging from white to dark wheatish. They possess all kinds of hair including straight, blonde, wavy etc. They have prominent eyes, pronounced and well-shaped nose and sharp features, medium built and average to stocky musculature. The Caucasian people have sparse skin pigmentation and due to this reason, they are not suited to live in hot equatorial climates.
Lastly, the Aborigines, Melanesians, Papuans, and Negritos i.e. original natives of the Australia sub-continent come under the Australoid race.
Despite having many nationalities, the Negros tend to be highly discriminated against among the various racial groups. Many of them, especially footballers, suffer this hatred a lot. Racial chants are made for many black players, sometimes, some of them are thrown bananas. These and more are several ways racism has been demonstrated. The reason is not farfetched. Joseph-Arthur de Gobineau and his fellow Nordicists fueled it. Another factor that gave rise to this menace was the misinterpretation of Darwin’s theory of Evolution into Social Darwinism by Herbert Spencer and his followers.
Today, the crime they committed against humanity over a century ago keeps yielding the intended result, though with ripple effects. Even the United States, supposedly a multinational society, is not fully exempted from the crime. Discrimination can never promote peace development. Development comes when all hands are on deck, without restriction, to make it happen. Once again “End racism. Build peace”.