Racism is an issue that has been prevalent within America for hundreds of years. We overcame slavery with the help of famous American leaders like Abraham Lincoln and fought for equal rights with the help of Martin Luther King Jr. Today we face the issue of a more discreet kind of racism- the kind of racism that is more felt than heard. A sales associate who may not ask a customer to leave because of the color of their skin, but follows the customer around the store to make sure he or she isn’t stealing is an example of discreet racism. This type of racism is harder to fight because it is harder to recognize than outward discrimination.
It seems as though minorities, especially African-Americans, have a disadvantage from the time they are born. According to Leondar-Wright, “The median white family has more than $120,000 in net worth (assets minus debts), while the median black family has less than $20,000.” There are many reasons why black families’ net worth is so much lower than white families’, but among the most obvious reasons is discrimination. Children from low-income families tend to have more responsibilities than those from middle or high-income families. These responsibilities may take away from time spent on schoolwork. For example, if a fourteen year old must work to help pay household expenses because his or her parents are having trouble making ends meet, it is highly possible that time spent working could be taking away from time spent doing schoolwork. Even if a student does not have to work while in school, it is still possible that his or her parents (if the student is lucky enough to live with both their mother and father) work hours that would render him or her responsible for extended amounts of housework. Either way, it is likely that a low-income, minority student must work much harder than a middle or high-income student to achieve the same academic status.
If and when African-American students are accepted into college, it is much...
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Cose, Ellis. The Rage of a Privileged Class. Harper Collins,1993
Leondar-Wright, B. (2004) Black Job Loss Déjà vu: Dollars & Sense, 253. Retrieved February 25, 2009, from http://learning.umassonline.net/webct/urw/lc26298.tp0/cobaltMainFrame.dowebct
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