Racism in America
- Length: 670 words (1.9 double-spaced pages)
- Rating: Excellent
Racism in America
The Construction of an Institution For hundreds of years, it has been "truth" that the races were biologically different. The differences that separated society were based on scientifically based genetic differences that gave reason for the separation of races. However based on recent findings, it is known that this is not the case. In 1974 Richard Lewontin dispelled this myth with a study he did that proved that there are no genetic differences between races. In fact he discovered if anything, there were more differences within the "races" then between the different races. Why then, do we still have use for different races? Why is racism still rampant in American society? The reason is that although race is not founded through science, this institution of American society is merely an obsolete combination of historical, social, and cultural construction.
Historically our physical differences supplied reason to separate into races. In doing this we see the emergence of races. Europeans marked individuals that looked different from them and used this difference as a justification for their reasoning that these individuals were inferior to them. To support their claims, there was "scientific research" done to explain our differences. These differences were said to be biological. As early as the 1800s scientists purported these ideas to be true. One doctor believed that blacks suffered from a form of leprosy. Because science is said to be so exact and indisputable, Americans held these theories to be truth and used them to construct the different classifications of race. These "biological" findings provided the basis for the most corrupt institution in America: racism. Through the classifying of people of color as inferior due to genetic reasoning, provided whites with an excuse to dominate. This social issue divided the country and served as a weapon to keep people of color in the minority and denied them of any economic or educational power that was necessary to survive in America.
This social phenomenon further abused the "biological" differences to further oppress people of color. Race provided the perfect method of domination in America. To the dismay of racists around the country, a scientist decided to reevaluate the "genetic" differences between the races, that had been so cleverly constructed.
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|Essay on Racism in America - Racism in America The Construction of an Institution For hundreds of years, it has been "truth" that the races were biologically different. The differences that separated society were based on scientifically based genetic differences that gave reason for the separation of races. However based on recent findings, it is known that this is not the case. In 1974 Richard Lewontin dispelled this myth with a study he did that proved that there are no genetic differences between races.... [tags: essays papers]||670 words|
Racism In America Cultural Construction Social Issue Races Scientific Research Leprosy Historically Excuse Classifying
Richard Lewontin constricted several tests on genes to test the validity of the past experiments. His findings showed that there was no difference at all genetically between the races. With this new finding, it would seem that there should be no reason for race and more importantly racism. However because the institution is embedded in our society it has become part of our culture. Even though it was science that helped in the construction of racism, science could not rectify the terrible mistake made.
In the twentieth and now moving towards the twenty?first century, the new evidence should have eradicated the racist attitudes and the need for race. However, because of race different cultures have evolved, many of which are formed through the bonding and shared experiences of that race. At present, it is rare to distinguish race from culture. Despite the fact that there are no genetic reasons for our differences, it is hard to dispel the ideas that have been instilled in American culture for hundreds of years. Our differences have been used to formulate races which in turn led into the further development of cultures. These cultures are reflections of how each race coped with oppression and domination. The cultures of the different races are further constructions that evolved from the initial construction of racial differences made hundreds of years ago. Hundreds of years ago racial differences were used as excuses for domination. However, if race and racism are mere social structures or constructions of American society, then it is possible to deconstruct this institution. In order to reject these old ideas that perpetuate racism, the oppressed must show agency and resistance, and use their cultures to overturn the racist ideas through educating the pollution that what makes us different does not make us inferior.
- Length: 641 words (1.8 double-spaced pages)
- Rating: Excellent
"KAFFIR". When you see or hear this word, what runs through your mind? Do you
picture a man with skin the color of the midnight sky, do you see him bending
his muscular body down to the dry earth to pick cotton from thorn-ridden plants?
Can you feel the heat of the sun beating down on his charred back? Perhaps you
can even taste the beads of sweat swelling from his forehead and arms. Or maybe
you are more inclined to visualize a dark-skinned woman with creases in her
forehead made by many years of hard work and endless worrying. You watch her as
she puts the breakfast dishes on the table and addresses her owners with a "yes
sah" or "yes ma'am".
There is nobody to cater to her needs. She spends each day taking care of
everyone but herself. Pain. Sorrow. Anguish. Agony. Is this what comes to your
mind when you hear the word "KAFFIR"? Well, it shouldn't because the word
"kaffir" has nothing to do with the color of your skin. The word "kaffir" is
just that; a word. It is a term that sprouted out of ignorance and continues to
be used to this day exclusively by ignorant people. A kaffir isn't a slang term
for an African; it is a word that describes the person that uses it. This type
of person is one who feeds his ego by dehumanizing those around him when he
feels they are not equal to him. He may regard those of different races or
nationalities as "bad" or "dirty" because they do not have the same skin color
as he does or they may cherish beliefs that are contrary to the ones by which he
lives his life.
These qualities describe the man who tells his son that it is okay to make fun
of people who are different because differences are bad. A child who is
repeatedly told such things will believe them because "mom and dad never lie".
This idea, inculcated in them as children, is like a grain of sand caught in the
clutches of an oyster. It eats away at their minds until it becomes part of them.
Instead of forming into a pearl, it creates a whole new individual that is as
ignorant as the parents who raised him. And so this vicious cycle of ignorance
Children need to be taught from infancy that people of other races and
nationalities are human too. They think like the rest of us. They have feelings,
hopes, and aspirations. They are intelligent.
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Racial Discrimination Hard Work Skin Color Taking Care Cherish Slang Thorn Regard Races
Sometimes they forget to put the
cap on the toothpaste or they might leave the toilet seat up. We are all human
and we are lucky to have such diversity in the world. Diversity does not exist
to enable us to learn tolerance. It exists for the same reason we have such a
wide variety of fruits and vegetables. If the only thing you eat is apples, you
will get tired of them. Try pears they are just as good. If our world consisted
of white-skinned, blond- haired, blue-eyed people, our eyes would get bored.
Differences are inviting and intriguing - a spice of life.
It is a tragedy that so many people are too ignorant to experience these finer
fruits in life. We learn so much from each other. Yes, we are now making
progress but at such an insubstantial pace, the damage is done and will take
decades to repair. We can only hope and pray that we will rise up and overcome
all discrimination, and the only instrument we can use is that of love. Without
love, we are divided. Love is a perfect bond of union. With it, we can
accomplish all things, but - we must be willing to give up the hate before we
can cultivate the love.