Racism was disguised and obfuscated by a limited upward mobility, of an individual nature, allowed by the prevailing paternalism: many blacks and browns denied the existence of racism, while whites also did or were indifferent to the issue of racial differences . However, Fernandes also optimistically believed that a turn in Brazil, away from paternalism in the mobile phone number list direction of a "competitive social order" (i.e., free-market capitalism), would bring greater racial equality as blacks integrate into a class society. This statement is based on a key characteristic of the racial formation of Brazil and other Latin American countries, which also conceals mobile phone number list the role of racism: the fact that class and race tend to coincide.
From this, the evident racial inequality can be justified by saying that it is a question of class and not of racial discrimination, and that blacks (and indigenous mobile phone number list people) are poor due to the legacy of slavery (or other oppressions and disadvantages of the past), not because of contemporary racism. In Brazil (and some other countries), the existence of a significant number of poor whites (or light-skinned mestizos) is also used to reinforce the argument "it's class, not race.
" Fernandes aligned himself with these arguments mobile phone number list with the idea that if class dynamics were freed from the constraints imposed by paternalism and developed freely in the capitalist market, blacks would be increasingly upwardly mobile into the middle and upper classes and they would leave behind the legacies of slavery and neglect.