Over the past years, concerns of brutality have been raised along racial oppression and marginalization in America. The American society is composed of virtually all races of the world. They range from the native Red Indians, African immigrants who were taken captive during the slave trade and the Whites who settled there during the American colonization era. Over time, all these races have grown without bounds thus creating a totally multiracial society. In modern times, we can simply say that America belongs to all races of the world. The racial diversity helped spur economic and political growth or the U.S. This made it the hub of humankind who are looking for greener pastures, so to speak (Goldberg, 2016). Every year, hordes of people move to America to try their luck. To most, fate is usually on their side when it comes to economic terms and even sometimes political environment. However, social problems come along with these benefits. And the peak of these problems lies the problem of racial discrimination. This paper will address the issue of white supremacy as a great factor that contributes towards racial discrimination. White supremacy is considered as a historically founded, institutionally perpetuated norm that champions for oppression and exploitation of people, nations, and continents based on the skin color of the people inhabiting it. Such is done by the white society in efforts to maintain the power, wealth, and privilege associated with their race.
During the colonial period, the Whites were perceived by the rulers as an endangered species and were thus accorded quality treatment, unlike the other indigenous populations. They were referred as lords or servants in order to separate them from the slaves. The Europeans received all the quality care that existed including the right to good schools, quality health care and provision of slaves to aid them to undertake their normal chores. On the other hand, the other indigenous populations were subjected to inhuman treatment that included them being forced to work on the plantations, poor schools, and poor living standards. The other indigenous populations were perceived to be resistant to the diseases that existed then as their energy was very useful towards the advancement of the American Economy. When the United States was founded as a new nation, the constitution clearly enumerated that U.S. was entirely a white nation. In this regard, the African and the indigenous populations were locked out from engaging in the issues that touched on the republic. The first white congress in 1970 unanimously passed a bill that banned all the non-white immigrants from being citizens of America as they wanted it to be purely a white country (Washington, 2014). In the early 19th century, the European Americans took over all the lands that belonged to the indigenous people a factor that led to adverse poverty conditions amongst them in the United States.
In his essay, Notes of a Native Son, James Baldwin explains the complexities that exist both in family relationships and the racial relationships. Regarding the relationship, he had with his father, Baldwin acknowledges that they never got along very well a factor he attributes to the fact that they shared the vice of stubborn pride. According to the essay, Baldwin struggled with his father for the better part of his childhood because his fathers wish was that Baldwin becomes a preacher just like him while the young man longed to be a writer. Baldwin grew up in Harlem and didnt find problems interacting with the whites as they were in the majority, with this fact he easily made friends although it was against his fathers will. When he decided to move to New Jersey, he was faced with an environment that less concerned towards making friends with the black man.
Baldwin became the minority in this town that was highly segregated. The poor treatment that he underwent in New Jersey developed bitterness and hate in Baldwin that almost matched that of his father. The Notes of the Native son captures the understanding of the black life and the thoughts of being black at the start of the civil rights. He captures the thought condition of being black in the United States of America. In his book, Baldwin explains how his angry father died of tuberculosis while he himself was just nineteen years old. He states that although his father had died, he had been reborn in him as his characters simulated that of his late father. While in New Jersey he threw a cup that was half full of tea as he could not be served simply because he was a black man. In his book, Baldwin employs great writing skills to express his frustration on the racial discrimination and its practice in the American society (James, 2013).
Racial discrimination in the U.S exposed the young African boys to a lot of challenges. One was that the black children were more susceptible to being expelled in school than the white children. According to the U.S. Department of Education report, the black child accounted for more than half of the countrywide suspensions despite their number being insignificant in the various schools. In the small cases where they did not earn a suspension because of the stereotype of being black, the children suffered immense discipline in the hands of their tutors or fellow white students as they were considered supreme.
Black children are also monitored closely by the police because of the perception that they can be criminals. According to the Centre for Public Integrity, the report showed that most of the children who were being referred to the law enforcement departments were basically black. The reasons for the kids were minor and could have easily been sorted out if there existed a mutual and equal perception between the whites and the black. The number of white children who were referred to the law enforcement agencies was very insignificant regardless of the things they did (Lukachko, 2014). The black children who were born out of the middle-class parents can still end up poor. This is the opposite of their White counterparts and is greatly attributed to the fact that the blacks face a lot of stereotypes while looking for employment. Since the early 1960s the rate of unemployment for the black population has been double compared to the whites as they are given first priority in the job market.
The separation of the human beings based on the skin color has been an unfortunate component of the American legacy since the establishment of the colonies in the 17th century. The above incidents of racial discrimination were highly supported by Racism and self-esteem. During the colonial period, for example, the colonists saw themselves as a superior race, unlike the other Native populations that surrounded them. This is what they relied upon when they enslaved the Africans and the Indians and took away all the material possessions they had as they believed they were the only ones placed to own everything. The Whites believed that they are the more civilized and disciplined race and thus deserved everything quality. Major acts of modern discrimination in the American society is centered on the stereotypes which are very inaccurate (Washington, 2014). Taking, for example, one that the young American men with African origin are very violent and have a high likelihood of engaging in crimes has created fear amongst the public and discrimination by the public.
Gustave Flaubert was very sensitive to the social issues that developed due to the interaction between the various races one being slavery. In his argument, Flaubert recognized that slavery reduces the human nature into possessions that can be bullied around and subjected to in human nature. Flaubert argues that the victims of prejudice suffer from the discrimination they undergo with racial discrimination being at the lead. He writes that the whole round growth of an individual depends on the perception and the support accorded to him or her by the surrounding environment (Irwin, 2013). The first-hand experience with modern slavery is brought out in the life of Equiano the African. Equiano birth country was Nigeria, but he was taken to slavery in England at a very tender age. While in England in managed to sail to various places while still a slave and when he came back to England he became very instrumental in championing against slavery and racial discrimination. Racial discrimination played a major role in the acts of slavery all over the world. In the modern society, still, there are things that are viewed as best done by the other Native communities than being done by the Whites.
Be as it may, repairing the wrongs that accompanied racism can be very hard. However, the leaders of all races need to come up with strategies for improving the lives of the Black Americans and other minority races in America. Such strategies might include improving the quality of education offered to these groups and exposing them to equal opportunities with their white counterparts. America also has an obligation to apologize to its citizens for condoning racial segregation and provide assurance that the nation will never go that direction again.
Goldberg, David Theo. Racial subjects: Writing on race in America. Routledge, 2016.
Irwin, Robert. "Flauberts Camel: Saids Animus." Debating Orientalism. Palgrave Macmillan UK, 2013. 38-54.
Jones, Edward P., and James Baldwin. Notes of a Native Son. Beacon Press, 2014.
Lukachko, Alicia, Mark L. Hatzenbuehler, and Katherine M. Keyes. "Structural racism and myocardial infarction in the United States." Social Science & Medicine 103 (2014): 42-50.
Washington, George, and Continental Army. The American Revolution: 1775-1783. Vol. II. Boston: Little, Brown, 2014.
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