International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination


racismSince 1966 on March 21 every year United Nations General Assembly calling on the international community to redouble its efforts to eliminate all forms of racial discrimination. The day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination was chosen to commemorate people who had been killed on 21 March 1960, during peaceful protest against the Apartheid pass laws in South Africa. Laws were designed by an apartheid government to seriously restrict black people movement in white areas. More than 50 black people were killed when police opened fire on a peaceful protest in the South African township of Sharpeville.

Race is a classification system used to categorize humans into large and distinct populations or groups by anatomical, cultural, ethnic, genetic, geographical, historical, linguistic, religious or social affiliation. Racism is the belief that characteristics and abilities can be attributed to people simply on the basis of their race and that some racial groups are superior to others. Racism and discrimination have been used as powerful weapons encouraging fear or hatred of others in times of conflict and war, and even during economic downturns.

The first and second article of the Universal declaration of human rights says that all human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of brotherhood. Everyone is entitled to all the rights and freedoms set forth in this Declaration, without distinction of any kind, such as race, color, sex, language, religion, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status. Furthermore, no distinction shall be made on the basis of the political, jurisdictional or international status of the country or territory to which a person belongs, whether it is independent, trust, non-self-governing or under any other limitation of sovereignty. Yet today, the fight against discrimination remains a daily struggle for millions around the globe.

I’m not racist, but… Each of us should think what we can do to eliminate racism in our society.

For the Elimination of Racial Discrimination 2014 year’s theme was chosen by the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to highlight key role that leaders play in mobilizing political will to combat racism and racial discrimination.

“I call on all people, especially political, civic and religious leaders, to strongly condemn messages and ideas based on racism, racial superiority or hatred as well as those that incite racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.”

~ Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Below you can fill in the test to determine are we somehow racist or not.