has been a hot topic in American history; From slavery that started 1619 to the
most recent police brutality in the 21st century. Since African American have
not been treated fairly in history, and it is still going on today, some of the
experience the African American face back then and now is the unfair treatment
of racial profiling, the blindness of white America, and the way they are
perceived through history.
As shown in the article by CNN, racism has
risen over the years. In the article, it gives a poll about how big of a
problem is racism in our society and who is aware of the effects. It states
“In a new nationwide poll conducted by CNN and the Kaiser Family
Foundation, roughly half of Americans — 49% — say racism is “a big
problem” in society today” (Shoichet). That is an 8% increase from
what it was in 1995, which was 41% of Americans. In the article is stating that
“In 1995, on the heels of the O.J. Simpson trial and just a few years
after the Rodney King case surged into the spotlight, 41% of Americans
described racism as “a big problem.” (Shoichet).
When doing the research through this article it
gives information about racism growing since the 2008 election Barack Obama.
Since his days in office, we have seen racism at its finest with the 2012
Trayvon Martin case and the Charleston church massacre (Shoichet). One of the quotes that were stated by Ellis Onic
in the article talking about how the white man thinks. It states “The
white man has had his way for so long, they don’t think of it as racism. They
think that’s just the way it is.” (Shoichet). This quote speech volume of
racism and why white America is blind to change. Through history, the white man has had his
way so, in today society, most still think this way, because the ancestors
before them have had this mindset and this way of life, which brings us to the
next point to an article asking, “Why are people Racist.”
Even in the year, 2017 racism is a growing and
the question everyone would like to know is, why is this a thing in this day in
age? The article “Why are people still racist? What science says about
America’s race problem.” dissects the reasoning as to why people, in general,
are racist. Most studies show that the people who are racist are due to the
fact that is the way they were raised. A Yale psychologist by name of Jennifer
Richeson says “some deep-seated, evil heart that is cultivated. It comes
from the environment, the air all around us.” (Kaplan and wan) The
environment does play a part in the upbringing of anybody, so be exposed to the
racism will happen. For example, in the age of slavery, no one really had
anything against the African, but since the Americans made them seem like
bottom feeders to the world, everyone treats them that. Another quote spoken by
Richeson is “The only way to change bias is to change culture…” (Kaplan and wan).
Racism is not a problem of people teaching
discrimination to others. Researchers explain that racism is the parent’s
failure to “teach kids not to be racist” (Wan & Kaplan). The example
parents set to their children is powerful. To
effectively teach a child the parent must
correct and eradicate the undesired
behaviors a child exhibits. It is very likely that a child learns racism from
his environment, and if not promptly corrected the behavior becomes a part of
that child’s character. Furthermore, children observe and imitate their
parents. A parent’s behavior may have a negative effect on a child because that
is what the child is getting from his home environment.
(Wan & Kaplan) It is up to the parents
who witness their child’s developing behavior to correct the racist tendencies
their children may display.
As previously mentioned, the environment
plays an important role in the development of
racism. William wan and Sarah Kaplan
state, “the nonverbal body language of black and white actors interacting
were enough to cause watchers to test higher for implicit bias afterward”
(). Recent events have shown that people “may harbor feelings of fear or
resentment that they don’t express in public” (Wan & Kaplan). Many
times, society pressures people to express feelings of racism that they may
normally not show making the environment an important factor in the development
Another factor found in the
environment that promotes racism is the contact with specific groups of people
that promote racism. These groups encourage “rhetoric that aims to lend
legitimacy to people’s racial and ethnic fears” (Wan & Kaplan). These
groups include the white supremacy group who
rants during the Charlottesville rally were, ‘”You will not replace us” and “White Lives Matter”‘ (Wan & Kaplan).
These groups encourage ideologies such as racism that promotes prejudice.
Recently, racism has reignited in the
United States. There have been many acts of violence that depict the fact that
racism was all but dead. Knowles states that important public figures such as
President Trump have sparked more racism. Knowles “thinks more virulent forms
of racism are being unleashed” (Wan &
Kaplan). President Trump’s hesitation in condemning the hate groups in the
Charlottesville rally sent a message of encouragementG1 G2
to this hate group.
The violent actions of individuals who
have performed crimes of hate show that racism has grown or at least reignited
in these hate groups. Society needs to accept people from all nationalities and
cultures. Violence has been a factor in racism
for a long time. Racial slurs have sparked violence, and have involved nasty
beating and even murder. Death of civilian and public figures has resulted from
racial related violence. All of this violence is a result of the racism, and
much of it because of the color of a person’s skin.
Today’s society is plagued with racism and
it is not going away. The solution to racism is not to wait for all the old
racist white male to die. This is a problem that has been passed from
generation to generation. The young people have a new and different view on
some topics that do not relate to racism “like climate change or gay
marriage” (Wan & Kaplan). However, racism is a learned behavior that
many understand as a change where “America is shifting into a
majority-minority country” (Wan & Kaplan). This change in the country
is increasing the bias in people of all ages, not just the old white male. The
white man feels that minorities are growing at a rapid pace that will displace
them as the majority very soon.
In order for
a person to let go of the bad habit of being racist is to change his culture.
For example, one must change the people they hang out with and the society
around them. Racist behavior is usually picked
up from our surroundings like family and friends.
It is hard to convince a person that he
is wrong, but nothing is impossible.
In America, we have
this thing called privilege. Privilege is usually something that one is born
with. In history, it was the white people had the upper hand with privilege. On
page 485 of the online textbook, SPCH 1311: Introduction to Speech
Communication, it has a section just on privilege altogether. One of the lines
reads “These people are what we refer to as the dominant group: white,
male, Christian, middle-class, able-bodied, educated, and heterosexual.”
(OER Pg. 485). In history, we see that
people of power are white men and they have ruled our country for centuries.
However, when an African American male just so happens to step in it becomes a
big deal to the public it become a race to see if the public can tear him down.
Now in the year 2017,
the black communities have the campaign for the black lives matter movement.
According the Black Lives Matter website “The Black Lives Matter Global Network
is a chapter-based, member-led organization whose mission is to build local
power and to intervene in violence inflicted on Black communities by the state
and vigilante” (blacklivesmatter.com) This website is designed for the right of
African American to show how the group as a whole should be treated fairly.
With the police brutality at a high since the case of Rodney King, they made
In conclusion to this
essay, The nation of the united states of America a blind to racism. Such as
the younger generation. Some schools want to take out the topic of slavery
since it is an uncomfortable topic to talk about in a public setting. Us a nation have to share this information, so
history will not repeat itself.