“There is a quality even meaner than outright ugliness or disorder, and this meaner quality is the dishonest mask of pretended order, achieved by ignoring or suppressing the real order that is struggling to exist and to be served.” - Jane Jacobs
The systemic oppression that began during slavery continues today. However, it is covert and pretending it doesn't exist only benefits those in power. Racism has no biological basis. It is a human construct created to justify systemic oppression and dehumanization.
There are many ways to learn this truth. Watch a movie. Read a book. Have a discussion. Listen. We must develop the "double consciousness" that most black people acquire as children. With it, we live in this society fully aware of its racism so we can combat it.
Black people are burdened with the responsibility of adjusting to an unfair system and proving the oppression exists.
Because we share this society, the decision to remain ignorant by one human, burdens another to accommodate his/ her/ their ignorance.
Yet, the responsibility has now shifted. Black people can no longer carry the burden alone, or do so in silence.
Once aware of the truth, the decision to ignore it contributes to the burden of racism. Yet, knowledge isn't enough in a racialized society. We must overtly confront racism and actively unlearn it.
The decision to retain racist ideas with the full awareness of harming others is narcissistic. The racist, like the narcissist will always deflect the blame on to others.