Racial discrimination and stereotyping has been a stumbling block the United States has faced for decades. Many men, women, and children’s daily lives are being impacted due to the color of their skin. Schools and workplaces often stereotype those of color, which negatively affects one’s morale and future.
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Millions of men and women have immigrated to the United States over the past three centuries to have freedom and prosper but discrimination has caused many dreams to sink. America has become more diverse every year, different ethnicities and races are filling the streets. Racially discriminating and negatively stereotyping those of color will come to an end when students and adults are exposed to diversity and all racial barriers are broken.
Immigration has made the U.S into what it is today. It has allowed America to grow and learn from different cultures around the whole world. Men and women left countries to escape poor living conditions and religious persecution. Their goal was to live in peace and achieve success and prosperity through hard work and determination. With immigration comes hard working men and women not just criminals and violent individuals, as seen in media. Certain races and ethnicities tend to have stereotypes that affects their daily lives. A great example of this occured during World War II. Executive order 9066 forced American citizens of Japanese descent relocate to internment camps thousands of miles away from home. The Asian-American community was treated poorly due to the attacks on Pearl Harbor and the “image” the Japanese left on all Asians in America. Today, this Executive Order is considered one of the most atrocious violations of American civil-rights. Thousands of lives were affected because of this decision and it can still be seen in many different ways today. According to the Washington Post, “anti-Muslim discrimination is common and on the rise”(Hauslohner, 2017). Catastrophic events have been occurring all over the world and behind them is ISIS, which stands for Islamic State in Iraq and Syria. ISIS is an extremist militant group that has made the world scared and have set a dirty image on the majority of Middle Eastern men and women living in the United States. The Middle Eastern population in the U.S is often seen as a threat because of what has occured over the last decade even though being citizens or born in the United States. In the Peer reviewed journal, Islamophobia and the Public Health of Religious Hatred stated that”…discrimination and the fear of men and women from the Middle East causes physical and mental health to those who are Middle Eastern”(pg.829). Unfortunately, these issues haven’t been solved and stereotypes are still negatively affecting people all around the world. It is safe to say that it has worsened over the years because of the Travel Ban that was set this summer. In recent years it has also been affecting students and their ability to grow and prosper.
The United States has progressively grown into a diverse country that provides opportunities to those of other races and ethnicities. The U.S often allows men and women of color to aspire to become successful but stereotyping and discrimination has set a barrier. Public education is offered to everyone but diversity isn’t seen in schools all over the country. Equal education has been an issue that affected those of color for many decades and continues to impact many lives. Though diversity is slightly seen in the United States today, the government has oppressed those of color from growing and succeeding in years past. During the late 1800s through the Civil Rights Movement, Jim Crow laws prohibited African Americans from succeeding in life due to poor facilities and lower education. Children of color were required to attend a school only of colored people. These restrictions often caused mental illnesses and poor physical health. Jim Crow laws are no longer in effect but the idea is still affecting students all over the U.S. “Children from racially stigmatised and ethnic minority groups experience substantial inequalities across a range of health and development indicators globally, with these patterns of unequal burden of disease continuing into adulthood”(Priest). Racial bias also plays a big role in why students are still experiencing discrimination. Certain races or ethnicities are perceived as problematic because of stereotypes. Teachers often treat their students differently because of how they view that specific race. According to Christerralyn Brown, Daniel Maggin, and Molly Buren,”…students of color are more likely to receive negative school discipline such as office referrals, suspensions, and expulsions”(pg. 431). Students who encounter these consequences are at a higher risk of failing, dropping out, and interaction with juvenile justice. In order to avoid this, teachers should be trained differently and racial bias should be tested. Once students become adults it continues to affect their lives and confidence. Discrimination not only is seen in schools but also in an adults daily life.
Adults in the United States face racial discrimination and stereotyping on a daily basis. At the age of 18, One is considered to be an adult in the United States. After high school you have an option of continuing school or working full-time. Expectations tend to be set for each and every male and female. Adults face pressure from jobs, home, and extracurricular activities. Studies show that non-white adults tend to experience racial discrimination more often than whites do( CNN). Six in ten Americans said racism against non-white adults is widespread in the United States(Gallup poll). Adults that face racism or stereotyping can develop mental illnesses. Depression caused by racism can lead to suicidal thoughts and death. According to Black Men and public spaces, author Brent Staples learned to smother the rage he felt at so often being taken for a criminal(Staples,p.81). As a young man he constantly saw tough guys locked away and friends being buried because of the color of their skin. Peer reviewed journal on race stated that being a non-White itself is suspect. Whether while sleeping in a common room in a university dorm, barbequing, walking home while wearing a hoodie, driving, wanting to use the bathroom in a coffee shop, and so on(Alang, 2017, pg 1128). Non-white adults not only have to worry about their daily lives but also have to live in fear of possibly being persecuted because of the color of their skin. The United States has battled with this issue for centuries and it has continued to take us down.
A counter argument to this issue is ignoring racial discrimination and stereotyping has a whole. Average citizens tend to ignore those being affected by racism. Confrontation is avoided most of the time, meaning discrimination and stereotyping can flow through the city without it stopping. Though many citizens disapprove of racism, it is hard for one to speak against it and end this issue…(Still working on it)
In conclusion, Many men and women of color in today’s society are facing the same problems. Barriers have been set for every immigrant, student, and adult of color but many of them are here to live a better life. Racial discrimination and stereotyping truly affects those who pursue the American Dream. This issue has not been solved and has worsen over the last few years. Racism and stereotypical joking should not be endorsed because it encourages people to continue this horrible trend the U.S has adapted to. Words can hurt, whether you mean them to or not. When describing a person, think if mentioning their race is important to the story. If you don’t know someone’s country of origin don’t assume. Exposing children to diversity at a young age is very important. Children can benefit from knowing other children from different groups at very early ages, before prejudices and biases are formed. Finally, being vocal in opposing discriminatory views and practices is very important because it truly helps solve this issue. Stereotypes hurt everyone. Examine what your prejudices are and make adjustments to look at everyone as an individual.
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