USA: Confusion from flip-flopping definition of racism

Critical Race Theory is creating a predicament for a US-based Jewish NGO. Influenced by woke politics, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) changed its definition of racism for the second time in two years. It now has an interim definition until it makes up its mind. 

The ADL is an international Jewish NGO based in the USA. It was founded in 1913. It’s mission is

“To stop the defamation of the Jewish people, and to secure justice and fair treatment to all… 

But it’s recent flip-flopping on a definition of ‘racism’ created problems, with ADL even attempting to define Jewish people based on the colour of their skin.

ADL’s original definition of racism was: ”Racism is the belief that a particular race is superior or inferior to another, that a person’s social and moral traits are predetermined by his or her inborn biological characteristics.”

That seems quite reasonable a definition of racism. Not perfect, but good enough for most. But apparently it wasn’t woke enough for some. 

During the peak of the Black Lives Matter protests, the ADL changed its definition of racism to state:

“The marginalization and/or oppression of people of color based on a socially constructed racial hierarchy that privileges white people.”

That certainly sounds more woke and fits nicely into the Critical Race Theory playbook, but it’s also very confusing. 

The ADL said that this new definition was created to “reflect that racism in the United States manifests in broader and systemic ways.”

Yet, critics argued it was too narrow and left out other types of racism. The ADL also began to categorise Jews based on skin colour. There was considerable criticism of this, so the ADL again changed its definition of racism to an “interim” definition that was broader and has similarities to the previous definition.

The interim definition states:

“Racism occurs when individuals or institutions show more favourable evaluation or treatment of an individual or group based on race or ethnicity.”

But this an an ‘interim definition’ so it’s highly likely to change again.