America is a racist society and likes itself as such. By contrasting racism with alcoholism (which America does not like) it becomes easy to see this.
For alcoholism the elite (those with positive access to state-supported power) set up Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and facilities, where alcoholics go and receive support and treatment. The idea here is to combat and perhaps eventually to eliminate alcoholism.
In contrast, when anyone stands up and announces he is a racist (see examples such as Michael Richards, Don Imus, Mel Gibson) he is vilified, given attention, and shunned. This is virtually the opposite treatment shown to alcoholics.
According to the American elite, the crime that Richards, Imus, and Gibson committed is not racism, because if that was their crime they would be encouraged to go to Racists Anonymous meetings for support. Their crime is a *display* of racism. That is to say, their crime is to show the world the racist that they are.
If we shunned alcoholics, what they would do is to be alcoholics in private and try to hide their alcoholism in public. Since we shun racists, this is exactly the way they usually behave, and when they don’t they are publically abused.
Except to the industry that produces alcohol and minor related industries, alcoholism is harmful. An alcoholic has reduced, sometimes severely reduced, productivity. He becomes more dangerous. Alcoholism has a negative impact on the economy and therefore the elite does not like alcoholism, despite it’s weakening of the individual.
Racism, however, is a completely different story. While racism hurts the economy as a whole greatly, it helps the economy with respect to the elite, as any slaveowner in the old south could tell you. Racism allows the elite to divide and conquer the working class, as they play one side against another and keep them from unifying to increase their wealth.
The elite don’t have anything in particular that they like about racism, so if some other methodology to divide and conquer or otherwise control the working class arose, in theory racism could be done away with.
But for now, the elite will not show compassion for racists, they will not establish Racists Anonymous meetings, and they will not treat racism as they do alcoholism. Because that could actually end racism, and they can’t have that.