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Racism in America

Updated on December 28, 2017

I’ve been seeing a lot of comments recently all over social media about racism. A lot of people are saying that racism no longer exists and black people basically need to stop playing the race card. I want to tell you a little story about an experience I had the other day.

I went to my grandmother’s house around the holidays to visit with her and a few other family members. They were having a conversation about my cousin who had apparently woken up early that morning to find two people peering into his window. My grandmother asks, “Do any colored people live nearby?” (My grandma refers to black people as colored people.) Now, I know what you’re about to say. She’s old and lived during a period of segregation. That’s a valid point. However, I want you to think about this.

My grandmother did live during segregation. She was raised to believe that white people are better than black people. She grew up with these misconceptions, biases and stereotypes about African American people. From the comment she made that day, it’s clear she believes black people are more likely to steal and essentially be more of a danger to our community. My grandma had 4 children. They were raised with the exact same misconceptions, biases and stereotypes she was raised with. Their children were raised with the exact same misconceptions, biases and stereotypes. Now of course there are exceptions to this. For example, even though I was raised to be prejudice against black people, I always had a mind of my own. I can’t personally fathom the idea of one race being superior to another. I can’t imagine my God would create all the different races just to hold one at a higher level of superiority. Sadly though, I’m the only one out of my group of cousins that chooses to think that way. My other cousins who were all born in the late 80's and early 90's are racist.

So if all these racist people who lived during segregation raised their children to be racist and their children raised their children to be racist, it makes perfect sense that racism is still very alive and well in our society. Racism isn’t just a part of our history, it’s a part of our present.

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    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 

      8 months ago from Orange County California

      Brandy

      Then maybe you could ask around, and see what you get.

      :)

    • Bloombybrandy profile imageAUTHOR

      Brandy 

      8 months ago from Midlothian, VA

      @bradmasterOCcal I’m honestly not sure.

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 

      8 months ago from Orange County California

      Brandy

      Do you think that being the only White Male in that room would be the same?

    • Bloombybrandy profile imageAUTHOR

      Brandy 

      8 months ago from Midlothian, VA

      @Readmikenow I have lived in an area with a large population of blacks and have never been mistreated by them because I was white. I have been to clubs and other events where I was literally the only white person in the room and I have received nothing but love and acceptance from black people.

      Racism is about thinking one race is superior to another. Do you honestly believe that the mistreatment you endured was related to them feeling like they were superior to you?

      I am fully aware that the majority of whites in America did not actually own slaves. From my research, it’s estimated that about 25 percent of white people owned slaves. From my understanding though, that number could be slightly off because many whites rented slaves from wealthier slaveholders. Just because everyone in America didn’t own slaves, doesn’t change the fact that we enslaved a specific group of people. I don’t believe my statement about our country being built on slavery is false because we were enslaving blacks from the beginning and using them for our own personal gain. Also, we were not enslaving any other group of people so to me, it makes sense that white people would start to believe that they are superior to blacks. I never said the success of our country was only because of slavery.

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 

      8 months ago from Orange County California

      Brandy

      "My dad’s side of the family has never met my partner so they have no reason to not like him other than the fact he is black.". If you are serious about this person, then you should have him personally visit with your Dad and his side of the family. If your Dad loves you then he would accept your choice of partner.

    • Bloombybrandy profile imageAUTHOR

      Brandy 

      8 months ago from Midlothian, VA

      @bradmasterOCcal I don’t believe the government can change people’s minds. I was simply saying that I do believe the government has played a role in race relations in our country. I believe that education is the key to eliminating racism. People need to learn about race and ethnicity.

      My dad’s side of the family has never met my partner so they have no reason to not like him other than the fact he is black. Growing up, I was taught to not befriend black people and to absolutely never date them. Luckily, I had a mind of my own and knew that that was just plain ignorance.

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 

      8 months ago from Orange County California

      Brandy

      It is hard enough in some families to like each other, and then people want the government to make equality. That is a social issue, and the government can make laws to force people not to discriminate but like Alcohol prohibition the law is not going to change what people want.

      I tend to look at relationships on a one to one basis. One of our best friends is a white woman, and a black man. We like these people, and color is not a factor.

      At the same time, I see so many beautiful, blonde women choosing to be around black men. They don't seem to care what other people think. On the flip side, what I don't see in the same popularity is black women with white men. What do you make of that?

      Mike also had a good point about how black communities treat white people.

      Back to my point, it is human to have a pecking order, and it goes from the family, to friends, to the workplace, social organizations and all over the country and world.

      Some people like to champion the blacks, and other minorities trying to make all people as one. Well Religion has been unable to do it, so why would government do any better.

      They even try to make Male, Female and X equal.

      The problem is that they can't even make any of them equal. So why is it they don't understand why it doesn't happen, or why they can't make it happen.

      Take Males for example. It is not a color, race or ethnicity that is the core of the problem of inequality. The white males have always had a pecking order, as do the F and X.

      So, we hear that Men are at the top positions of companies, so the Women want equality and those top positions. The problem is that Men have been in the work force longer than women, so there are more men in those positions. But the real issue is that for every male, and especially every white male holding those positions, how many white males didn't get those positions. That is the point, that is why the people holding these positions are the 1%.

      It is a number game, and as the women changed from homemakers to working mom's and then working single mom's and just single women they have to compete not only against the repository of men, but also among women as well.

      The difference between the Man and the Woman is that the woman have been given laws to protect them, while white men don't have these laws, yet they are discriminated as are women. This also moves down the line to color. White males don't have the same laws that minorities do, and yet they still have the discrimination. The discrimination may be based on different reasons but it is still discrimination.

      Government cannot change the minds of people, they can only punish them if they find out what is on their mind. If you don't like someone, do you want the government to get into this to force you to like them?

      We can't do anything as a blanket grouping, but with a one to one relationship based on liking the person has a better chance.

      As for your Black partner, and family gatherings, can you disregard that it may not be his color but him. He could just a well be the same color as your family and not be liked. Only you know, because it is your family. And some families don't act like families but like strangers. Just a thought.

    • Readmikenow profile image

      Readmikenow 

      8 months ago

      Brandy, I suggest you go and live in a neighborhood where most of your neighbors are African-Americans or of Hispanic descent. Trust me, you will experience racism first hand because you are white. I have had such an experience. People will say things to you, do things to you and hate you because the color of your skin is white. It would be an experience you never forget and puts racism in perspective.

      "This country was also built on slavery with African Americans being the slaves." Whoever taught you this has done you a serious injustice in your teaching of American history. You need to realize slavery was a very minor part of the success of the United States. The majority of the people in the United States did not own slaves.

      "In 1860, according to the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, 75 percent of white families in the United States owned not a single slave, while 1 percent of families owned 40 or more"

      https://www.theroot.com/slavery-by-the-numbers-179...

    • Bloombybrandy profile imageAUTHOR

      Brandy 

      8 months ago from Midlothian, VA

      @bradmasterOCcal You bring up a valid point about the government and its’ role in racism in our society. I wish my grandmother was just making a “rude” comment. However, that’s not the case. I am in an interracial relationship and I’ve been with my partner for close to five years. I have been unable to bring my partner to family events because of the fact he is black. What could the reason be for that? I understand people who are religious may think it’s wrong to intermarry. However, I have a cousin in my family who is gay and they have no issue with that. My male cousin has been able to bring his male partner to family gatherings while I am marginalized and excluded because I date a black man. That leads me to one conclusion and one conclusion only. Black people simply aren’t good enough. You also make a comment about racism being used as a talking point and how that further contributes to the problem. Problems don’t go away by ignoring them. Race relations in this country will never improve if we deny their existence and never talk about it.

    • Bloombybrandy profile imageAUTHOR

      Brandy 

      8 months ago from Midlothian, VA

      @Readmikenow, that’s an interesting thought. However, I do not believe racism is part of the human condition. Racism is about thinking one race is superior to another. Since I do not feel that one race is superior to another, that leads me to believe it is not part of the human condition. If it was, I would be racist. I can’t tell you that sometimes certain stereotypes about people don’t enter my mind. They do but I try to remember that they are just stereotypes created by our society. The reason I talk about white people being racist to black people is because that is my experience. I live in an area with a population of predominantly whites and blacks so I can only speak to my own experiences. This country was also built on slavery with African Americans being the slaves so it’s no wonder why black and white relations are being discussed so frequently. Furthermore, from my experience my family perceives black people to be the issue in this country. They do not speak about other races as they do African Americans. Because of that, I believe that being black in this country is the absolute worst thing you can be. The reason I wrote the article is because I am so tired of seeing people deny the fact that racism does exist. When black people speak about the injustices they face, people say they are pulling the race card and whining. I was hoping to shed some light on the issue with my article. Yet I recognize that no matter what you say, certain people will NEVER recognize the issue we face in this country. Thanks for taking the time to read my article and offer your thoughts.

    • Bloombybrandy profile imageAUTHOR

      Brandy 

      8 months ago from Midlothian, VA

      Anna, thank you for taking the time to read my article. We have definitely come along way in this country but I feel like we have taken a few steps back in recent years.

    • Readmikenow profile image

      Readmikenow 

      8 months ago

      I always find it interesting that when people mention racism in the United States they talk about white people being racist against blacks and other minorities. As a white person who has lived in predominantly minority neighborhoods, I can tell you all races are guilty of racism. It shouldn't be attributed to just one race, but all races. Trust me...it IS done by all races. So, I ask you, is racism part of the human condition?

    • bradmasterOCcal profile image

      bradmasterOCcal 

      8 months ago from Orange County California

      The biggest proponent of the so called Racism in the United States is carried on by the United States Government.

      They want to pigeon hole people by race, ethnicity, gender, political party, income, age, where they live, where they work, education and pretty much any other human attribute.

      How are people going to be treated equal when the government insists on putting all the difference into their databases.

      The other group of people being racists are the people that keep calling everyone that disagrees with them as racist.

      There are many people that make rude remarks about anyone including their family for physical or mental differences. This is just human nature. The kids in school make fun of anyone that they can. That is not racism as much as it it just trying to become superior when they are really just insecure.

      Stereotypes exists as a reality because many people in a group exhibit these similarities. That is not racism it is just defining common criteria for groups of people. Calling that racism is not going change the facts found in the stereotypes.

      Look at how both of the major political parties treat and refer to the people in the other party.

      Finally, the word Racism has been misused and abused by their users to cover more than the word actually means.

      The continued used of Racism as a talking point merely extends the Racism. It doesn't do anything to cure the underlying problem.

      To change this problem we have to start by forcing the government to stop pigeon holing people.

    • Anna Watson profile image

      Anna Watson 

      8 months ago from Atlanta, GA

      It makes me sad that I agree with you, I would love for racism to be replaced with love. I do believe that as a society we are improving, but I also feel we've had a set back over the last several years. Racism is taught, as you have unfortunately witnessed within your own family, but the good news is that anything that can be learned can be unlearned.

      Remember the words of Dr. King, "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice." 180 yeas ago in England, the intellectually elite would sit around in bars discussing whether or not the Irish had tails. 100 years ago in the States, the highly educated believed that from an evolutionary stand point, white people were smarter and more evolved than black people.

      Today, it's the intellectuals who are showing the world that race doesn't even exist.

      70 years ago the upright citizens were excited about lynchings. Today they're appalled by even the thought of it.

      Things may still be bad, but they're getting better. You're proof of that, friend. Don't despair.

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