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Racism is an organized practice of discrimination against a targeted group based on the idea of ethnic or genetic inferiority. People acquire racism as a result of a propaganda program produced by the ruling elite in the society. Fostering racism is one of the ruling elites' techniques to divide, control, exploit, and manipulate the rest of the people in the world. To instill racism, some group is targeted and demonized by propaganda spread through use of the media and political leaders. The rest of the people in the society are happy to accept the demonization of the group because they can benefit from taking the land, labor, or minerals rightfully belonging to that group without paying compensation for them.

In its early stages racism takes the form of social discrimination which is justified by allegations of some sort of inferiority of the targeted group. This leads to organized repression and economic exploitation of the targeted group by the society as a whole. If the group resists being demonized, repressed, and exploited, and the prize is worth the trouble, the ruling elite intensifies the propaganda of racism so that members of the targeted group are considered to be inhuman animals who may be treated badly without compunction. In addition to propaganda the ruling elite may use provocations or false flag operations in order to prejudice society against the targeted group.

Racism goes hand-in-hand with scapegoating. A group of people is blamed for the society's problems so that the ruling elite will not be blamed. Racism is used to start international and civil wars.

Particularly ruthless and acquisitive people may develop a racism on their own, without the inspiration or incitement of an organized program of propaganda.

Well-known examples of the practice of racism include Hitler Germany (targeting Jews, Gypsies, and Slavs), the United States (targeting Native Americans), South Africa (targeting Blacks, and Indians), the American South (targeting Blacks), and Israel (targeting Arabs). Since 1964 the Republican Southern Strategy has pandered to Southern racism, with the later addition of Christian Right intolerance. Southern racism is, however, on the wane, due to demographic shifts and a growing generation gap.