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The Struggles of African-American in United States

Updated on July 7, 2017

Introduction

The oppression of African-Americans in United States has been a common phenomenon. These have been the victims of racisms, torture, employment discrimination, marginalization in social, political and economic resources and many other issues. Despite the claim by others that many barriers that subjected the blacks into oppression are today leveraged to a great extend, there is still more to be done in order to improve the status of the black American in the country.

Discussion

According to United States Bureau of Labor statics (2013), the black community faces enormous economic challenges. They are far behind the white community not only in economic matters, but in many other aspects. For instance, the levels of the unemployment within the community are at 10.1% compared to 4.7% within the white community in the United States. The same report continues to states that, the number of black Americans that are facing unemployment rate is higher than the unemployment rates of the white community during the recent recession. In addition, African Americans households’ median income is just over $34,600. The figure is near $24,000 less than the median income for white Americans households. The net worth of white households is more than thirteen times that of the black community. Moreover, the black American are three times more likely to live in poverty compared to the white Americans (DeNavas, and Bernadette, 2014).

The rate of unemployment among the black communities is twice more compared to unemployment within the white communities. Statistics from the American Bureau of Labor Statistics (2015) indicate that one in every ten black American is unemployed. The situation is worse when it comes to young black Americans. Going by the recent recession on March 2010, one in six African Americans was unemployed. The statistics further states that the black American are two and a half times to be unemployed in the long term, two in every five black Americans look for jobs for more than six months. The same black Americans are more likely to be underemployed. For instance, for individual working part time, one in three black workers are doing for the reason that their hours have been cut or cannot find a stable full-time job elsewhere compared to one in five white workers. A third of black’s teenagers and just over 20% of the young black American adults in their early twenties are unemployed. As a result of this trend for young black American adults, their long-term employment and earnings, prospects are greatly hurt.

As a result of higher rates of unemployment, higher poverty, lower income and slower wealth accumulation among African American households persists. The high disparities have greatly influenced growing deficit in the economic security of the black community in the United States. For instance, according to statics just over 27% of black Americans live in poverty, three times compared to the figures of the white community living in the United State who are at 9.6%. The African American households’ median income is $34,600 compared to $58,300 which is the figure of the median income of among the white household (DeNavas, and Bernadette, 2014). The static further states that over half the black American household are headed by a single mother, the figure is just under 20% among the white the community. Moreover, 47% of the families among the black communities headed by a single mother live in poverty. Children living in black communities households are twice likely to be raised in the bottom 20% of the income distribution compared children raised in white households. The research further implies that more than half of black children raised in the bottom 20% of the income distribution are likely to remain in their state even as adults, as compared to the children in a white community that only a third of the children who begin in this state are likely to remain there. By the year 2013, the white household was thirteen times wealthier compared to the black household in regards to net-worth? Since the great recession, racial disparity in wealth has increased. For instance, the net worth among black households fell by 41% between 2007 and 2013, as compared to a 26% drop among the white household within the same period (Kochhar, & Fry, 2014).

The black household was the most affected in the recent recession as the values of the home declined sharply. Although the prices have rebounded over time, the recovery has not been in line with the stock market. Consequently, there has been a slower recovery in black household wealth compared to the white household. The home-owner equity makes up of a higher proportion of overall wealth for black household compared to the white households, in spite of the fact that the black people are less likely to be owners of homes compared to the white household. According to the statistics, the customers of mortgage companies that were unable to continue with mortgage plans in 2007, the black borrowers were three times more likely to have had a subprime mortgage compared to the white borrowers, as a result of high-cost mortgage led to many homeowners to foreclosure (Avery et al, 2017). According to the Center for Responsible Lending, African American homeowners who took out a mortgage between 2004 and 2009 were twice as likely to have lost their home to foreclosure by 2011 compared to white homeowners. In addition one in ten black homeowners who took out mortgages during the peak of house boom, in the long run, lost their home to foreclosure.

A report by JED (2014) stipulates that African Americans are still behind the educational attainment figure. People with a college education are likely to earn more and have better job prospects compared to those without a post-high school education. According to the statistics, African Americans are less likely to further their education beyond high school compared to the white students, in addition, the black student is less likely to earn a college degree. The report further states that 21% of the members of the black communities between 25 and 29 years are successfully through with the college's life compared to 41% of the white communities in the same age. Among the college graduates, the black graduate faces worse job prospects compared to the whites. For instance, the unemployment rate for the black workers that hold a bachelor’s degree is at 5.2% compared to 2.9 the white workers (Bureau of Labor Statics, 2015). In addition, the median weekly earnings of full-time black workers with bachelor’s degree is approximated at $900 compared to $1,100 for the white workers, the figure grows to $12,000 in annual earnings difference between the two communities.

Conclusion

From this discussion, it is apparent that the history of Black people oppression is long and dense. These people have been oppressed from all quarters, socially, politically, and economically. Though there are others who may go on to argue that America is a “post-racial society” and that the obstacles to “black advancement” have leveraged, there is no doubt that majority of African-Americans are still below their white counterparts. In this regard, there need to be a revolution to express and even unleash the sometimes openly and sometimes indirectly expressed oppression of the black community to get rid of it and create true equality.

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    • Nyamweya profile image
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      Silas Nyamweya 4 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks for your comments Guzman, I agree with your sentiments

    • Nyamweya profile image
      Author

      Silas Nyamweya 4 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks for your comment Readmikenow. Concerning whether African Americans can do something to improve things, I can say yes indeed. For instance, they can support and elect leaders who have their interests at heart. These leaders, coupled with advocacy campaigns will then work to influence public policy on color for the purpose of creating a race neutral society. It should be noted that the current day policy of the US has only worked by dividing people socially, academically, and legally based on color and hence this should be changed.

      Regarding whether the former president of the US benefited the black-Americans, I can also say that his track record on this is also positive. Just one example, Under President Obama’s watch there was an emphasis on black males. In February 2014, the president introduced My Brother’s Keeper, to specifically focus on improving the lives of young African American males. The initiative encouraged nonprofits to raise $200 million in five years for programs focused on young men of color. Though My Brother’s Keeper was not a federally-funded government program, no such effort has existed before under any American president.

    • Nyamweya profile image
      Author

      Silas Nyamweya 4 months ago from Nairobi, Kenya

      Thanks for your comment Readmikenow. Concerning whether African Americans can do something to improve things, I can say yes indeed. For instance, they can support and elect leaders who have their interests at heart. These leaders, coupled with advocacy campaigns will then work to influence public policy on color for the purpose of creating a race neutral society. It should be noted that the current day policy of the US has only worked by dividing people socially, academically, and legally based on color and hence this should be changed.

      Regarding whether the former president of the US benefited the black-Americans, I can also say that his track record on this is also positive. Just one example, Under President Obama’s watch there was an emphasis on black males. In February 2014, the president introduced My Brother’s Keeper, to specifically focus on improving the lives of young African American males. The initiative encouraged nonprofits to raise $200 million in five years for programs focused on young men of color. Though My Brother’s Keeper was not a federally-funded government program, no such effort has existed before under any American president.

    • Angel Guzman profile image

      Angel Guzman 4 months ago from Joliet, Illinois

      The sad state of the United States...yes being a minority can be a challenge, sometimes even more depending on where you live. Our previous president did a good job in helping minority communities but he himself can't do it all and was blocked a lot in achieving his goals. I will say this...nothing will ever change until there is robust investment in our neighborhoods and we are in positions of power at all levels.

    • Readmikenow profile image

      Readmikenow 4 months ago

      Very well written article. I have two questions.

      Is there anything the African American community can do itself to improve things?

      also

      Do you feel the African American community benefited from the time Barrack Obama was president?