Five reasons why we should stop calling white people "Caucasian"

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      These days, the term “Caucasian” is found everywhere, from news reports and police bulletins to daily conversation. It’s widely considered the politically correct way to refer to white people.

      But “Caucasian” is an erroneous term. And, although many people use it to avoid sounding racist, the continued usage of this term actually perpetuates racism and Eurocentrism.

      Here’s five reasons why it’s time that we stopped using the term “Caucasian”, when we really mean “white”.

      1. It’s “highly unlikely” that white people came out of the Caucasus region in Eurasia.

      2. In the 18th century, German anthropologist Friedrich Blumenbach devised a flawed classification system that divided humans into five races—Caucasian (white), Mongolian (yellow), Malayan (brown), Ethiopian (black), and American (red). Blumenbach believed that the Caucasian race was the “most beautiful” and oldest, ideas that support white supremacy. While Blumenbach’s four other racial terms are considered obsolete, “Caucasian” has sadly survived.

      3. People of Indian descent technically fall under the category of “Caucasian”, but they aren’t considered white (and have historically been denied the same rights as white people in Canada and other countries). The U.S. Supreme Court confirmed the distinction in a 1923 ruling, which denied U.S. citizenship to Indian-American writer Bhagat Singh Thind.

      4. Usage of the pseudoscientific term “Caucasian” reinforces the erroneous notion that there is a scientific basis for racial hierarchies.

      5. If the term falls out of usage, we won’t have to hear stupid jokes about white people putting the “cock” in “Caucasian” anymore.

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      Comments

      58 Comments

      Laura

      Nov 8, 2013 at 12:36pm

      Why isn't this "four reasons." Then I could've sent it to my well-meaning mom and dad. NOW I CAN'T.

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      hay sting

      Nov 8, 2013 at 12:41pm

      How about we stop using the term "white"?
      If we can use the term white, are we not in some sense allowing for the terms: "yellow", "red", "brown", "black" to refer to people? I guess it seems to be a matter of what relative term said ethnic community doesn't mind being called.
      It's all a bit odd when you think of it-- "white" and "black" being acceptable but all else unacceptable.

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      vee

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:03pm

      thank you!
      it is funny to see people squirm in discomfort to say "white" as if it were a racist term. privilege and power - nuff said.

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      Nathan Crompton

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:13pm

      Five very good points! UBC prof Bruce Baum wrote a book on this, "The Rise and Fall of the Caucasian Race" (2006)

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      sknyjohn

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:13pm

      The Caucasus Mountains are not in Asia; they're in the southeastern part of the European part of Russia. Barely in Europe, but in Europe all the same.

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      LINO

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:15pm

      This PC crap is way out of hand and needs to stop.

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      Stephen Hui

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:21pm

      @sknyjohn: The Caucasus is in Europe and Asia. I'll replace "Asia" with "Eurasia". Thanks.

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      Jeff

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:30pm

      Slow news day? Find something more pertaining or entertaining to write about or find a more useful career.

      In short, get better or get out.

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      Sean

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:31pm

      Sure, cuz calling Asians "yellow" and Natives "red" would go over soooo well with them *rolls eyes*.

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      sknyjohn

      Nov 8, 2013 at 1:48pm

      Correction: The Caucasus are mostly in Georgia but also are partially located in Azerbaijan, & both nations are (barely) part of Europe, though they border Turkey & Iran respectively.

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