Racists Anonymous

Racists Anonymous is a support group founded in 2015, based on the Alcoholics Anonymous model,[1] which views racism almost as a mental illness.[2] The group was created by Sunnyvale, California United Church of Christ pastor Ron Buford over his frustration with typical attempts to deal with race issues which merely either left him feeling angry, or white participants leaving feeling guilty. The first meeting was held in 2015 following various police shootings and the Dylann Roof mass murder.[3] As of September 2017, 90 congregations in four countries have requested the program's kit, and several have established their own programs independently.

A basic dictum of the organization is that all people are racist to varying degrees, and that it is impossible not to be racist if raised in American culture, and that one can engage in self-improvement, as opposed to "fixing" oneself.[4] Racist Anonymous applies the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous with a modification on Step 1: it says, "I have come to admit that I am powerless over my addiction to racism in ways I am unable to recognize fully, let alone manage," ("Racists Anonymous") as compared to the "We admitted we were powerless over alcohol--that our lives had become unmanageable" of AA.[5]


  1. ^ Stinson, Annakeara (2017-03-06). "Racists Anonymous: Getting to Know Ron Buford". Paste. Retrieved 2017-09-15.
  2. ^ Rita (2017-08-24). "Racists Anonymous". RITA GOES… ATTEMPTS AT SINCERITY AROUND THE WORLD. Retrieved 2017-09-15.
  3. ^ Chandler, Michael (2017-08-21). "'Racists Anonymous' groups at churches: The first step is admitting you have a problem". The Washington Post. Retrieved 2017-09-15.
  4. ^ Greenberg, Will (2017-01-11). ""Hi, I'm Bonnie, and I'm a Racist": In Racists Anonymous, the first step is admitting you have a problem". Mother Jones. Retrieved 2017-09-15.
  5. ^ NPR The Culture Inside transcript

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