Racial Equality In America Essay Research Paper

Racial Equality In America Essay, Research Paper Matt Kalish 3/23/99 Racial Equality in America Throughout the history of the country, America has been considered a fairly racist union. Undoubtedly the greatest injustice in the United States to this day is the white?s treatment of African-Americans, specifically slavery.

Racial Equality In America Essay, Research Paper

Matt Kalish


Racial Equality in America

Throughout the history of the country, America has been considered a fairly racist union. Undoubtedly the greatest injustice in the United States to this day is the white?s treatment of African-Americans, specifically slavery. The vast majority of non-black people of that time believed that blacks were not equal to other races. White Americans

of the slavery period specifically held this view. It was nearly impossible for a black to live free in America, and it was even more difficult for a black to find a job. As time passed, however, many people began to change their views on race relations in America. After slavery was abolished, fewer and fewer people believed that they were supreme

over the African-American race. Not only were blacks free, they were becoming accepted as people in our society. They were even becoming accepted in the workplace. Many employers were no longer bothered by giving a job to an African-American. America seemed to finally be turning around for the better. After all, African-Americans only asked for equality, and they were getting closer and closer to that goal with each passingday. Suddenly, however, some people began to lose sight of the mission they set out to accomplish. Instead of just trying to make America equal, they felt that they should attempt to make up for the times when it was not. Many places in society, such as the workplace, the court system, and the entertainment industry, seem to have shifted to being

easier for blacks to advance themselves in than whites. The intent, to improve race relations in America, was good. The problem that comes about, however, is that it begins to enter people?s minds that it is better to be black than it is to be white. African-Americans should certainly feel confident with themselves, but they should not be given a reason to feel superior, either. Nobody should be able to feel superior to

another person simply because of race. Everything that this country has worked for in the last century is compromised by these changes. Black supremacy seems to be promoted more than racial equality, and racial equality must be this nation?s goal. Undoubtedly African-Americans have suffered great hardships in America, however, the country today cannot allow their past to influence racial equality.

Many aspects of society have become dominated by African-Americans. One reason for this is that there are many things in the United States today that only African-Americans can do. This would not be a problem, except for whites do not have these same kinds of areas that are exclusively for them. The music industry today exemplifies this kind of separation. Rock and roll music was formerly made up of only whites, but gradually African-Americans moved into that genre of music. This is a good thing for racial equality, except for when you look at the other types of dominant music today, rap and rhythm and blues. There is almost no white singers in these entire styles of music. On MTV, there has been only two white rap singers in the history of the channel, and one of them, Vanilla Ice, is the subject of constant ridicule by black rap fans and

performers. Many people think that any person could sing these styles of music if they were talented enough. This is not true, however, because African-Americans in this industry tend to be unreceptive to white singers, and because of the overwhelming intimidation they cause, almost no white rap singers continue their careers very far. This same kind of division occurs in today?s courtrooms. African-Americans today can claim

that they were only arrested for a crime because of their race. For example, OJ Simpson?s defense team used this kind of treachery to get an acquittal for him. Despite overwhelming DNA evidence, the defense claimed that a racist police officer set him upto make it look like he committed the murders. Some people may believe that the officer actually did set him up, and it is of course possible that he did. The fact still remains,

however, that without the thought of racism in the mind of the jurors, he would have been found guilty by a landslide. The problem here is that only an African-American could use that kind of defense and be taken seriously. A white man could not claim this because no jurors would believe that an African-American would frame a white man out of racial

hatred. It just isn?t claimed, especially because the man on trail would probably be thought of as a racist for accusing a black man of this fraud. Because only African-Americans can use that defense effectively, it makes the courts more apt to side with a black man than a white man, and therefore, makes the courts unequal. Another place African Americans have separated themselves is in the workplace. It has become increasingly difficult for employers to operate their business as they please because of

this. For example, if a white employer was to fire an African-American, it would always be possible for the black man to accuse his employer of firing him because he is black. If the worker takes his employer to court, it would be highly probable that the employer would be forced to hire the man back. If the firing was actually racially motivated, this

would be good. Many people even believe that blacks are honest about racism in the workplace and would not claim this if it were not true. This is generally not the case, however, as many African-Americans have used this accusation in the past to simply get their job back, even if they actually deserved to get fired. Time has proven that the African-Americans pull the so-called ?race card? more often and more effectively than whites. Also, blacks tend to use it to get them out of troubles in their life, as they are often false accusations. Clearly this is not equal. Because of this separation in entertainment, courts, and employment, it is fair to say that it is easier to be black than

white in the United States today.

Another reason why one would be better off being black than white in the United States today is the laws regarding race. Many laws today attempt to make up for the troubled past that African-Americans had faced in this country. There is a serious problem with this, despite the good intent. The roots of the problem lie in the fact that these laws are making it easier for African-Americans to succeed, and in doing so, are

making it harder for whites to live. One such law is known as ?Affirmative Action?. This law impacted America?s workplace on a very large scale. Its basic idea was this: with all else equal, a black man would get a job over a white man simply because he was black. There are some obvious and serious problems with this, namely the hypocrisy that is

generated by the lawmakers. The idea brought to many minds is that in order to make up for past injustices, we should turn the tables on today?s whites and do these injustices on them. Many people even believe that it is proper to do this type of ?an eye for an eye? action. This cannot be proper, however, because racial equality will not exist in this country until we stop distinguishing black from white. People who believe that

?Affirmative Action? is good have lost sight of our nation?s goal. Another problem is that today?s court systems are supporting these laws. The courts, for whatever reason, are allowing these laws to be interpreted so African-Americans are indeed getting jobs because of their race. If someone is getting a job because they can perform it better than anyone else, then they deserve to get it, regardless of race. No one, however, deserves to get or lose a job because of their race. Any court that rules only after considering the racial implications is not just, despite the trust many have placed in the judicial system. Justice is supposed to be blind. Another place where laws have impacted racial equality today is in the entertainment industry. It seems that people can say just about whatever they wish in the movies and in music today. If you examine this a little closer, however, you will see that it is a rather one-sided freedom. It is made very clear what can and can?t be said by a white person in the movies or in music today. There are very definite barriers, especially regarding racial issues. If a person chooses to cross them, there can be serious implications to that. Not only could a person lose their job, but they could be labeled a racist and be subject to slander and other forms of hatred also. They could even be subject to laws that they may have broken in the process. This, however is not a problem. No person should be able to say derogatory things about another person,

especially another race. The problem comes in when African-Americans can say whatever they please, and the worst thing that the law will do to them is maybe put a parental advisory sticker on their CD, or rate their movie ?R?. Many people may believe that African-Americans deserve to speak as they please about whites after the treatment they received in the past. This is not possible, however, if we are to conserve racial equality in this country. No person should be allowed special privileges over another

person because of race. No one should be able to say things that another person cannot. Because of these types of laws and justice, African-Americans have been given advantages in America to which whites have no equivalent.

A final reason African-Americans have an advantage over whites in the United States today has to do with racial supremacy groups. There are a great deal of organizations in America looking to advance their race in the country. Undoubtedly these groups are not good for the standing of racial equality in this country. The issue here lies in how these groups are viewed by the public. There are not many people who look at white supremacy groups, such as the KKK, in a good light. Black and white people alike tend to not support, and possibly even rally against these groups. These actions are good for racial equality in this country. The problem occurs when black supremacy groups do not meet this same kind of resistance. Several years ago, a rally took place in Washington, DC called the ?Million Man March?. This march included many thousands

of black men and leaders from around the world. One must wonder what the intent of this demonstration was. Without a doubt, the advancement of the African-American race in America was one of its objectives. It should be expected that since these people?s goal was racial supremacy, many would feel that the rally was immoral. This was not the case, however, as many people were indifferent to the idea. The media, in fact, even covered

this demonstration in a supportive nature. News anchors made people believe that there was no problem with this march, despite their intentions. Because of this support, many people across the country were led to believe that the march was for a reasonable cause when this is not the case. Also, no one seriously attempted to stop this march, probably

because they believed that they would not win a court battle. The court system tended to accept this kind of action as a Constitutional right, which it is. Amendment One includes the right to peaceful assembly. With their intentions, however, perhaps it should not be allowed so indiscriminately. No one should have the right to rally for racial supremacy. Many courts and citizens believe that because the Constitution allows freedom of peaceful assembly, people should be able to take actions like the ?Million Man March? without discretion. These people apparently don?t realize that racial equality is what leads to peace, and anything else leads to discord. Just because this assembly was not directly violent does not mean it was peaceful. In fact, it was far from peaceful. In addition to this, many employers allowed African-American workers to take time off for this march, even supporting it. They of course should be able to take time off as they please. The problem is that many blacks received special treatment, such as additional

vacation time, so they could attend this event. This is an acceptable action by employers, just so long as they would give the same treatment to a white employee who wished to attend a white supremacy march. Intuition would tell one that this is not going to be the case. This is clearly evidence that many people in this country are either terribly ignorant

and cannot see the mission of rallies like the ?Million Man March?, or support an African-American attempt at racial domination. Some people believe that black people deserve this special treatment because of their troubled past. This is certainly neither fair nor equal. A white person should not receive special treatment with bad intentions like that, but neither should African-Americans. Actions like these by the media, the courts, and the workplace, as well as carelessness by many people, are more reasons why African-Americans are better off than white people in today?s world.

Despite the past hardships African-Americans have endured in this country, today?s people cannot allow their troubled past to influence racial equality in the United States. Everything this country has gained in the last century is in jeopardy if racial equality cannot be maintained. This country has worked through the dark times of slavery and racism to get to where we are today, and we cannot allow our great nation to slip back into an equality depression. The cost would be great if people began to believe that one race is better than another, and so the entertainment industry, the workplace, and the court systems of America must be contained before they instill these values in America?s people. Nobody had a choice of what color to be or what to look like when they were born, and racial equality is a reflection of that. Legislators and citizens alike must keep in mind our nation?s goal of racial equality, and not lose sight of that goal by making and following foolish laws. Certainly African-Americans have suffered greatly in the past, however, we must not continue to make things easier for blacks at the expense of whites today. Despite the popular belief that blacks deserve reparations for their past treatment, our country cannot and should not afford them special treatment on account of the past. Now is a new era of life in the United States, and a new chance to fix the mistakes we have made in the past. We must not make these same mistakes twice, as that would be devastating to the future of our country. The greatest nation of the future will be the fairest nation, and if the United States is to maintain its greatness, then it must first achieve racial equality.