Miranda Larrin History 105-14 March 13th 2013 The Evolution of Racial Inequality On a day to day basis, humans interact with one another, despite of their race or ethnic descent. However, that is not the way it has always been. Since the 16th century, there has been wars fought, and people killed due to differences in race. Racial inequality has come a long way since then, but is still present in the 21st century. Most societies deny that racial inequality is still present today, but the fact of the matter, it is.
The term “race” is used to define a single human being. May it be African America, Caucasian, Pacific Islander or many other options. On job applications, doctor and dental forms, college applications and many other forms of documents, society is forced to check a box that identifies them. The question of the matter is what does it matter? The term “race” came from racism itself. Dating back to the 16th century segregation has played a key role in history. Not only for the United States, but worldwide.
When societies began to see differences in cultures, such as having that different skin color, different foods or different languages, the different communities formed hatreds for others who were labeled as “different”. This began the racist movement that we still see today. Groups began having different names or titles which is now considered a race of people. Since the sixteenth century, race and racial inequality has changed in multiple ways. For example, in 1904 the European powers began taking over southern Africa where the ethnic group Herrera’s resided.
The Europeans began moving the Herrera’s to concentration camps to kill them, all for land. In the 1940’s Hitler wanted to form a new order of Nazi Germany. He did this by forcing the Jewish, African Americans, and any other race that was not European or at the least resembled European decent to concentration camps. Just like the Herrera’s the majority of those placed in these camps were killed. However, Hitler did not do this for power or land; he did this to form a perfect land. He wanted everyone to be what he considered perfect, white, blonde, and had blue eyes. Jumping over to America, slavery of the
African American race and sometimes the Indian race, were shipped to America in the 16th century and up until the 19th century, these people were forced to work. Unlike the European power, America’s goal of this group was not to exterminate them, but to use them as work. The African Americans had many rules and restrictions that prevented them from living a normal and equal life as the whites. We also forbid them from displaying for sale at the market or from carrying to private houses for sale of any commodity, was on rule for the slaves that was established under Code Noir.
Slavery was made illegal after the American Civil war in the 1860’s. However, The climax of the history of racism came in the twentieth century. This is due to those of different ethnic backgrounds trying to become civilized in society. Crime rates shot up and police brutality rose with aim to those whose race was of African descent. Those races had a nearly impossible time getting jobs which meant they had to live in poor communities. The “white” race began forcing the “blacks” to go to different schools, drink from different fountains, go to different stores and ride in the back of the bus.
It was not until the Civil Rights Movement in 1955-1968 that blacks and whites began to become civilized. As one can see, racism has manifested itself into world history playing a key role in major wars fought, protests, and mass exterminations. Even though there are no more concentration camps, and slavery has been made illegal, racism is still present today in the 21st century. Today, racism is not as harsh and brutal as it was in the past; it has become more or less a humor. On comedy shows there is often a “token” character.
Typically this character is African American and is made fun of by the other characters. These jokes are found to be funny and laughed at. The reality is that the jokes made are racist. A common form of humor is a meme. A meme is a typographic joke. Some are of a black man where it is joking about committing a crime; some are of an Asian man who is joking about either the shape of his eyes, or how Asians are said to be smarter than the average person. These memes are found all over the internet and are simply laughed at by all races.
The biggest racial inequality argument happens to be racial profiling by police. Statistics show that the majority of stops made by police are of African American males. There have been several reports of police harassing and being unfair to these individuals. However, when an individual of European descent is stopped, they are given a warning if it is their first time and treated fairly. Little wonder that black parents, regardless of class, routinely drill their children in how to act when stopped by the police, something few white parents ever think about.
Despite the jokes and the racial profiling, American society fails to recognize racism today, even though it is clearly present. All in all, racial inequality has been a major issue since the 16th century. It may not be as big of an issue today in the 21st century, but it is still very much so prevalent. Racial inequality has come a long way since the 16th century, let alone the 20th century, so it is easy to see an assurance of equality in the future. However, societies such as American must overcome their ignorance of being racist in order for that to happen. Bibliography
Fredrickson, George. “ Racism, A Short History”. (Princeton University Press) Peabody, Sue. ” Slavery, Freedom, and Law in The Atlantic World”. (Boston: Bedfords/St. Martins) Rosenburg, Paul. ” Birth Certificates and Unconscious Racism”. (Aljazeera, 11 May 2011) ——————————————– [ 1 ]. Sue Peabody, Slavery, Freedom, and Law in The Atlantic World. (Boston: Bedfords/St. Martins) [ 2 ]. George Fredrickson, Racism, A Short History. (Princeton University Press) [ 3 ]. Paul Rosenburg, Birth Certificates and Unconscious Racism. (Aljazeera, 11 May 2011)