necessary to understand the characteristics of a structurally racist society


1. the principle or practice of a political system in which un-restricted power is vested in one person,  dictator, etc;  a despot, : a political theory that absolute power should be vested in one or more rulers like kings, monarchs, popes, etc.   religious absolutism manifests itself with attitudes such as,... "the right to change laws  belongs to neither governor nor people, but to wise men who know the laws of interpretation as well as the temporal conditions in which society lives." 

2. absolutism as a philosophy

 any theory which holds that truth or moral or aesthetic value is absolute and universal and not relative to individual or social differences. 


A conglomerate is a corporation that is made up of a number of different, seemingly unrelated businesses. In a conglomerate, one company owns a controlling stake in a number of smaller companies, which conduct business separately.

Corporate State

A country in which a large part of the economy is controlled by the special interest sectors  that exert enormous influence, if not absolute control in government.  A corporate state is always a National Security State.  

The state requires all members of a particular economic sector to join an officially designated interest group. Such interest groups thus attain public status, and they participate in national policy making. The result is that the state has great control over the groups, and groups have great control over their members

 A  characteristic of a National Security State is that the military and related sectors wield substantial political and economic power. They do so in the context of an ideology which stresses that 'freedom" and "development" are possible only when capital is concentrated in the hands of elites.


Electronic Police State

An electronic Police State is a state in which the government aggressively uses electronic technologies to record, collect, store, organize, analyze, search, and distribute information about its citizens.

The United States uses high end technologies for mass surveillance, such as the use of databases and pattern recognition software to cross-correlate information obtained by wire tapping, including speech recognition software and telecommunications, traffic analysis, monitoring of financial transactions, automatic license plate recognition, the tracking of the position of mobile telephones, and facial recognition systems  and the like which recognize people by their appearance, gait and DNA profiling , etc.


1-ownership of the government by an individual or by a group or any other controlling power

2- the growth of power (corporations, conglomerates, industries or religious movements) to a point where it becomes stronger than the democratic state  accompanied by an erosion of individual rights and protections which is sustained and  enforced by the police or military apparatus

Fundamentalism / Religious / Muslim

Religious fundamentalism is defined by many as..”political movements of the extreme right, which in context of globalization manipulate religion in order to achieve their political aims

Fundamentalist denounce secularists and seek to bring politicized religion into all spheres.  They want to police and judge and change the behavior, appearance and comportment of other people of Muslim heritage and identity.  Most importantly, these fundamentalist fear their own internal contradictions so they make war on the internal contradictions of others and those who are not submissive to their critique are viewed as contaminated disbelievers. 

Fundamentalist tend to aim to sharply limit women’s rights although this is most often couched in the soothing language of ‘protectionism and respect’. The goal of a fundamentalist movement is to create a theocracy, but they must dominate women first to keep the system in place.

Sometimes  fundamentalism is seen as the way in which it embraces absolutism and refusing to accept questioning. All well-being lies in the hands of God- or more specifically, in the hands of those who 'pose'  as the ambassadors for God. 


Islamism is a term used to describe an Islam that ideologizes* religion to create a totalitarian and unchallengeable  political- platform

*In this sense: to turn the comprehensive way of life, Islam, into an ideology for an intolerant political agenda, statements like these from fundamentalist underscore this idea:  1-“ When we are in power there will be no more elections, because God will be ruling” or this .." 2-The word freedom is a poison put about by Freemasons and Jews, designed to corrupt the world on a grand scale...The idea of popular sovereignty fundamentally contradicts many verses of the Qur'an" (19)

19 El-Mounquid, Number 23, quoted in M. Al-Ahnaf et al.,


Liberal democracy 

Liberal democracy is a form of government in which representative democracy operates under the principles of liberalism, i.e. protecting the rights of the individual, which are generally enshrined in law…such as the rule of law, an independent judiciary, along with a further distinction that liberal democracies have rarely made war with one another.

Liberal democracy ( neo-liberal )

Adherents of the dictates of neo-liberalism—austerity, deindustrialization, anti-unionism, endless war and globalization—to empower and enrich themselves and the party, speak the language of a liberal as a deception to mask their real relationship with the elite or ruling / corporate state. The actual liberal class—the segment of the Democratic Party that once acted as a safety valve to ameliorate through reform the grievances and injustices within our capitalist democracy have been excised from the political landscape.  In support of the neo-liberal agenda,  Corporations pour hundreds of millions of dollars into the assault on liberal democracy by backing candidates, creating the Business Roundtable, funding The Heritage Foundation, the Manhattan Institute, the Cato Institute, Citizens for a Sound Economy, and Accuracy in Academia. These Corporations  marginalize or silence those who in “the college campus, the pulpit, the media, and the intellectual and literary journals” are hostile to corporate interests while at the same time they destroy the radical labor and social movements that were the real engines of social and political reform in the 19th and 20th centuries.

Illiberal democracy 

An illiberal democracy, also called a partial democracy, low intensity democracy, empty democracy, or hybrid regime, is a governing system in which, although elections take place, citizens are cut off from knowledge about the activities of those who exercise real power because of the lack of civil liberties.


Mass Incarceration / Hyperincarceration

Mass incarceration is a massive system of racial and social control. It is the process by which people are swept into the criminal justice system, branded criminals and felons, locked up for longer periods of time than most other countries in the world who incarcerate people who have been convicted of crimes, and then released into a permanent second-class status in which they are stripped of basic civil and human rights, like the right to vote, the right to serve on juries, and the right to be free of legal discrimination in employment, housing, access to public benefits.

Whether called mass incarceration, mass imprisonment, the prison boom, the carceral state, or hyperincarceration, this phenomenon refers to the current American experiment in incarceration, which is defined by 1)  comparatively and historically extreme rates of imprisonment and  2)  by the concentration of imprisonment among young, African American men living in neighborhoods of concentrated disadvantage.

In October 2013, the incarceration rate of the United States of America was the highest in the world, at 716 per 100,000 of the national population. While the United States represents about 4.4 percent of the earth's population, it houses around 22 percent of the world's prisoners.



These include extensive economic liberalization policies such as privatization, fiscal austerity, deregulation, free trade and reductions in government spending  in order to enhance the role of the private sector in the economy.  Also known as Free Market economy,  Advocates of Free Market policies avoid the term "neoliberal".

Currently, neoliberalism is most commonly used to refer to market-oriented reform policies such as "eliminating price controls, deregulation and capital markets, lowering trade barriers", and reducing state influence on the economy, especially through privatization  and austerity measures.



A condition, nation, government or organization in which many cultures coexist within its  society and maintain the sanctity of their respective differences.


The belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races. 

It can also mean : prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior.


Police State

Police state is a term denoting a government that exercises power arbitrarily through the power of the police force.   A Police State also describes an undesirable state of living characterized by the overbearing presence of the civil authorities.

The inhabitants of a police state may experience restrictions on their mobility, or on their freedom to express or communicate political, religious or other views, which are subject to police monitoring or enforcement. Political control may be exerted by means of a secret police force that operates outside the boundaries normally imposed by a constitutional state.  

Structural Racism

Definition: Structural Racism in the U.S. is the normalization and legitimization of an array of dynamics – historical, cultural, institutional and interpersonal – that routinely advantage whites while producing cumulative and chronic adverse outcomes for people of color. It is a system of hierarchy and inequity, primarily characterized by white supremacy – the preferential treatment, privilege and power for white people at the expense of Black, Latino, Asian, Pacific Islander, Native American, Arab and other racially oppressed people.

Scope: Structural Racism encompasses the entire system of white supremacy, diffused and infused in all aspects of society, including our history, culture, politics, economics and our entire social fabric. Structural Racism is the most profound and pervasive form of racism – all other forms of racism (e.g. institutional, interpersonal, internalized, etc.) emerge from structural racism.

Indicators/Manifestations: The key indicators of structural racism are inequalities in power, access, opportunities, treatment, and policy impacts and outcomes, whether they are intentional or not. Structural racism is more difficult to locate in a particular institution because it involves the reinforcing effects of multiple institutions and cultural norms, past and present, continually producing new, and re-producing old forms of racism.

Individual Racism: Individual or internalized racism lies within individuals. These are private manifestations of racism that reside inside the individual.

Examples include prejudice, xenophobia, internalized oppression and privilege, and beliefs about race influenced by the dominant culture.

Institutional Racism

Institutional racism occurs within and between institutions. Institutional racism is discriminatory treatment, unfair policies and inequitable opportunities and impacts, based on race, produced and perpetuated by institutions (schools, mass media, etc.). Individuals within institutions take on the power of the institution when they act in ways that advantage and disadvantage people, based on race.

Example: A police officer treats someone with racial bias, engages in institutional racism, representing a law enforcement institution. 



Secularism is a belief that religion should not be part of the affairs of the state or part of public education. The principles of separation of church and state and of keeping religion out of the public school system are an example of secularism. 

A secular state is a concept of secularism, whereby a state is or purports to be officially neutral in matters of religion.   A secular state is a social order separate from religion, without actively dismissing or criticizing religious belief. It protects the rights of all individuals to practice as it befits their conscience.

In political terms, secularism is a movement towards the separation of religion and government, this is sometimes referred to as the 'separation of church and state.  This can refer to reducing ties between a government and a state religion, replacing laws based on scripture (such as Halakha and Sharia law) with civil laws, and eliminating discrimination on the basis of religion. This is said to add to democracy by protecting the rights of religious minorities.



At the most basic level, shariah is the Muslim universe of ideals. It is the result of their collective effort to understand and apply the Quran and supplementary teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (called Sunna) in order to earn God’s pleasure and secure human welfare in this life and attain human salvation in the life to come.

Religious observances are relatively static and fixed, the rules on civil and criminal matters, however, are subject to change in accordance with circumstances. Here, in fact, we come to an important feature of shariah: in addition to interpreting scripture in order to apply it to reality, shariah also includes the attempt to process reality to determine how scripture, Prophetic teaching and the cumulative tradition of deliberation would have one respond to it.

While the common translation, “Islamic law,” is not entirely wrong, it is under-inclusive, for shariah includes scores of moral and ethical principles, from honoring one’s parents to helping the poor to being good to one’s neighbor. Moreover, most of the “rules” of shariah carry no prescribed earthly sanctions at all. The prescriptions covering ablution or eating pork or how to dress are just as much a part of shariah as are those governing sale, divorce or jihad.

For Muslims because Shariah represents the ideals that define a properly constituted Islamic existence, Islam without shariah would be Islam without Islamic ideals. 

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Surveillance State

A surveillance state is a country where the government engages in pervasive surveillance of large numbers of its citizens and visitors. Such widespread surveillance is usually justified as being necessary to prevent crime or acts of terrorism, but may also be used to stifle criticism of and opposition to the government.

Totalitarian (govt.)

Of or relating to a system of government that is centralized and dictatorial and requires complete subservience to the state.

Other words used to denote the same meanings are: autocratic, undemocratic, dictatorial, despotic, fascist, oppressive, repressive and illiberal. In a totalitarian world, what is considered private, such as religious practice, dress, artistic expression, academic interests  and even pastimes are now the concerns of the state.

Totalitarianism / Inverted

Inverted Totalitarianism finds its expression in the anonymity of the corporate state. It purports to cherish democracy, patriotism, and the Constitution while manipulating internal levers to subvert and thwart democratic institutions.   i.e. manipulate the public (manufacture consent) rather than engage its members in deliberation. It will demand greater powers and broader discretion in the use of ‘state secrets’, a tighter control over society’s resources, more summary methods of justice and less patience for legalities, opposition and the clamor for socioeconomic reforms.

The American problem with Inverted Totalitarianism is not only liberals who are not liberal; it is also conservatives, once identified with small government, the rule of law and fiscal responsibility, who are not conservative. It is a court system that has abandoned justice and rather than defend constitutional rights has steadily stripped them from us through judicial fiat. It is a Congress that does not legislate but instead permits lobbyists and corporations to write legislation. It is a press, desperate for advertising dollars and often owned by large corporations, that does not practice journalism. It is academics, commentators and public intellectuals, often paid by corporate think tanks, who function as shameless cheerleaders for the neoliberal and imperial establishment and mock the concept of independent and critical thought.