“In the eyes of white Americans, being black encapsulates your identity. ” In reading and researching the African American cultural group, this quote seemed to identify exactly the way the race continues to still be treated today after many injustices in the past. It is astonishing to me that African Americans can still stand to be treated differently in today’s society. In reading “Blacks in America”, Andrew Hacker states that “being black in America has consequences in areas of: wealth, identity, raising children, occupational opportunities, place of residence, and treatment in the criminal justice system.
” To be honest, and I feel bad saying that I already knew this was happening to African Americans. I have heard stories of blacks not getting jobs; regardless of how qualified they are for the position, because of the color of their skin. I have heard stories, and even witness black children getting picked on in school because of the simple fact that they are black. I watched a video in school where a black family moved into a white neighborhood, and before long all the white families had moved out because they didn’t want a black family in their neighborhood.
This was confirmed by Hacker in my research in the quote, “Almost all residential areas are entirely black or white. ” I have also seen videos of African American men getting beaten by white arresting officers, and have heard stories of many black men being stereotyped by policemen. This must be why Hacker states “When white people hear the cry, “the police are coming! ” it almost always means, “Help is on the way. ” However blacks cannot make the same assumption. ” These are all reports and events that I think the average American has seen before, but yet most people, including myself, continue to just shrug of and ignore.
I guess it’s something that I might have subconsciously accepted, or maybe refused to think more deeply about. In reading and researching, I reaffirmed knowledge that I refused to take a greater note of. I wouldn’t say I learned anything new, because I knew what I wanted to focus on. A quote from Andrew Hacker’s article summarizes the above best, “In the eyes of white Americans, being black encapsulates your identity. ” It may be easy to tell how I am going to focus this anthology. I am going to focus it on the injustices that African Americans continue to face in the United States today.
That being, I know exactly what I need to get out of my interviewees, but it is probably a sensitive subject for some of the people I need to interview. I am not black, and I don’t know what it feels like to face this discrimination in everyday life. I can understand the tenderness that African Americans must feel then, when revealing and talking about their experiences with discrimination. I would think then, that it must be especially sensitive to talk about with a person from the race that they receive this everyday discrimination.
It will be interesting to hear all the different types of prejudice that my interviewees have received throughout their lives. I would imagine that it ranges from just a look, or the way white Americans act around them, to voiced and physical altercations between themselves and white Americans. Hacker at times seems to be speaking directly to African Americans as he describes these altercations, “So many of the contacts you have with them (white Americans) are stiff and uneasy, hardly worth the effort. ” But to me, that is exactly what the problem is.
Why would it not be worth the effort? The first step to take for the uneasiness between the two races to cease to exist is for us (all people) to stop seeing color because once we act differently around the other is where all the problems seem to start. The second step is to make these contacts worth the effort. If we choose to continue to stay in our own comfortable circle of race, when is the problem ever going to end? The answer is never. My opinion as a white 18 year old is that most of the blame lies on the white race.
Imagine being eyed every time you go into a store, having your car searched for no reason, or greeted warily at restaurants all because the color of your skin is different. We ignore this daily discrimination because no cares enough anymore to take notice that it happens every hour, every day somewhere in the United States. Will it ever stop? Not until we each take the steps to make it. A recent census commercial I’ve seen said “We (United States) can’t move forward until you mail it back. ”
I believe that our country can’t move forward and truly be great until we make sure these daily discriminations are eliminated from our society. In this project, I will interview African Americans on their personal experiences with discrimination, how they handle it, and if they think anything can be done about this problem. Sources: Andrew. 1999. “Blacks in America. ” Pp. 160-168 in The Meaning of Sociology, 6th ed. , edited by Joel Charon. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. A Time to Kill. Dir. Joel Schumacher. 1996. “African American History. ” University of Washington Libraries. Web. 02 Apr. 2010. .
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