If fighting injustice is spiritual then knowing how the injustice came about is important. It is like taking the first step towards the shrine.
Let us continue exploring the injustice of racism. Historically racism grew from war. When people who did not look like us attacked one the first seeds of hatred were sown. Many prophets and kings fanned this hatred between cultures as they felt xenophobia will make their people rally behind them more fiercely. Differences in culture and sense of hygiene further cemented racial barriers.
Slowly science was brought to the aid of racism. In the 16th-19th century for example, several races lay claim to superiority. Some of the whites for example said that the darker your colour is the closer are you to animals in the evolutionary ladder. Evidence was taken from the world of evolution to make the black man resemble a chimpanzee. Portugal’s decline as an empire was attributed by many to their intermarrying with black (inferior blood). The British empire did the most to popularize the notion of white superiority. Rudyard kipling penned a poem, The white man’s burden and the British used it as a strong propaganda tool to rationalize its presence in the colonies. Making it appear as if it was not for selfish gain but for uplifting the black, brown or yellow man that they were colonizing these communities. (Only now, when some of the oppressed races are beginning to claim their places under the Sun, it is becoming clear that it was not that these races were the burden but that the colonial burden on them which was not letting them rise).
All this lasted till the world war. In the world war Germany started using the same partisan rhetoric, which so far the white community had used against the coloured countries, against the other white nations. The danger of sectarian logic came home. And racism was at least publicly denounced by one and all. Martin Luther King lead the black power struggle and won legal equality with the Whites in the US. So did racism come to an end in the US? No. If it had do you think Michael Jackson would have undergone risky surgeries to change the colour of his skin?
Racism continued under closed doors. What was earlier a philosophy espoused by the state turned in to a social unspoken (privately uttered) world view.
Simultaneously the races which had lost to colonial powers started finding success and the identities they had lost during colonial subjugation. Many people around the world came in to contact with them and found them not so bad. Through the appreciation they received they also realized that they were not so bad after all. They started asking for equality.
Here came the main rub. When you ask for equality from someone who you have deferred to in the past he behaves violently. This is the violence that Indians are facing today.
How should it be handled?
There are very many well meaning people among the whites. Their support should be taken. Powerful and internationally mobile elites of the disadvantaged races should take up cudgels for their communities. Economic sanctions should be imposed through product boycotts. Martial arts training should be made a compulsory part of education. The laws and mores of the foreign land that you live in should be followed to the letter. In our utterances we should be careful e.g . our media often refers to Australians as Kangaroos. Not done.
Another point, Success brings arrogance and arrogance brings failure.
The international recognition and applause that India is receiving should not go to our heads. Parchhai se kad nahi naapte, Zindagi ki dhoop roj badalti hai (One should not measure his height through his shadow. The angle of the Sun changes constantly)
Also our politicians should understand the alliances among nations and how they operate.
Note how when India pointed fingers at racial attacks on Indians in Australia- within a fortnight Britain initiated its crack down on illegal Indian migrants in UK and USA issued a travel advisory against travel to India. Was that all a coincidence? May be not. If two weeks after that Ghulam Nabi Azad, our Health Minister has said, day before, that travel to USA should be reconsidered because of the threat of swine flu- is that a coincidence? I hope not. I hope it is a well calibrated, non-knee jerk tit for tat response to US. If yes it is really admirable. We have started showing spirit we are becoming spiritual.