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Race and Your Community in the United States

When one is judged or discriminated against because of the color of his skin or his origins and beliefs, it referred to as racism. This makes one feel belittled when with other people of another race (Moore, n.d). Racism in the United States dates back to the colonial era where individuals that are not originally from America were really mistreated. During this time inhuman activities such as slavery would just be considered as normal because the white people did not think that the Black people had any rights and that they were lesser human beings. With time, the Black people and people from other races fought for their rights as human beings and although it took time, they started getting the respect they deserved. Even with us as human beings having evolved so much the issue of racism will never be completely buried as there are still a lot of people who are racists in various ways and racism has taken different disguises, which people seem to overlook. This paper will focus on the subject of racism in my community.

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The community I stay in does not consist people of different races and diverse cultures and therefore most of them do not resemble me in many ways. The color of my skin is not the same as that of everyone else although there are some people with whom we have the same skin color but at the same time, we are very different from each other. Though we have the same skin color, we all have different beliefs, personalities, and this I believe distinguishes one from the other. Physically I am very different than most of the people in my community, this is in the color of my skin, the hair and color of the eyes is very different. Although we do not share same physical traits we are the same in different ways too because we share some beliefs like religious beliefs which makes us feel like we are the same.

The leaders in my community try to treat people everyone fairly but there are instances where they tend not to be fair. As leaders, they try to lead by example and want the people to look up to them. Most of the leaders are fair although there are some who are sometimes very subjective. Being an African American I feel that some of the leaders tend to treat us in a suspicious manner and that they are biased when it comes to certain circumstances. In case there has been a criminal act in around the community, there are some leaders that are very judgmental when dealing with people like sometimes even judge and me us harshly.

People who are different from me are sometimes not treated as harshly like we are by some of our leaders. They are viewed as more trustworthy and they are judged fairly unless some of them are seen spending a lot of time with people from my race then they are given more attention.

The members of my community have learned to live with people of different races and most of them accept this and live comfortably with us. At first living in my community, being from my race was difficult because we seemed very different from the rest of the people and they also had a hard time accepting us the way we are. After a while things changed because we had gotten to know each other better and they judged us by our personalities but not by the color of our skin. Sometimes it is much easier to be colorblind when addressing people (Harper, Lori & Ontario, 2009). As we continued living together, they noticed that we actually had many things in common with them like religion.

As much as most of them have accepted living with us peacefully in the same community, there are still others that cannot quite fully accept that. Some of the people living in my community are hostile to some of the people of my race because they have certain beliefs about us for instance, they believe that we are violent sometimes and do not have moral standards. This creates some kind of tension in the community because the people from my race feel the need to protect themselves at times. At school some of the students try not to associate themselves with people from my race, this may be due to their cultural backgrounds.

People from other races are more so rendered the same attitude. White people who are the majority in my community seem to accept each other more than they accept people from other races. Although they do not see eye to eye in almost everything, they are more comfortable with each other it is like they have some silent understanding with each other.

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In the Matter of Color, Race and The American Legal Process is a book written by Leon Higginbotham (1978), it specifically talks about the African Americans and the suffering and brutality they went through because of their color. Leon wrote this book in a bid to fight for justice for the Black people because they were never compensated for the suffering and discrimination. Although racism still exists in my community now, during the colonial era, slavery was major and many people suffered endlessly before the Black people decided to fight for their rights. Since some of the people from my race are still bitter because of what their ancestors had to go through, this book explains that it is best that the Black people are compensated.

I feel really represented by the local media in my community because they air the views of everybody regardless of your race. Unlike before when it was very rare to find people of my race being represented at any media house, now there is a lot of representation in form of shows, television programs or even in the local news. The African Americans are sometimes featured in some of the shows and if they have any concerns, they are aired without any threats being aimed at them. If there are any injustices committed against us, the issue is given attention by the media.

Leadership requires skill and some of the people feeling that position in my community have earned it but there are others who do not deserve to it. I respect some of the leaders in my community because they do their job well and clearly, role models to the rest of us. These leaders are similar with me in terms of their values and beliefs, we all believe in justice and fairness and we also believe that people should not be discriminated against because we are all human beings. People from my race that represent us as leaders are quite countable but add value to the community.

Other leaders are in that position because they were favored over those that qualified to fill those shoes. They do not have the interest of the people at heart, are very unfair, and judge in a manner that is beneficial to them only. We may be different physically but we are also different in our cultures and morals.

Not everybody’s interests are represented fairly in my community; there are those matters that are given a lot of focus and energy depending on who is presenting them. The minority interests are not being well represented unless somebody really intervenes or the people protest against it. Hence, some people suffer but do not let their worries be known because after all, nothing is going to be done about it. Even at work, some people are given priority over others even though you both hold the same position.

Given the chance to change how things are being handled, firstly, I would make sure there are no racial boundaries whatsoever. Every issue would be prioritized no matter who is presenting it to stop other people from feeling belittled. Unjust leaders would have to face serious consequences; this would minimize cases involving injustice.

Slavery was the intense form of racism that the people of my race experienced during the colonial era. During the war, the fact that the Americans fought so hard to prevent themselves from being enslaved by another nation and yet they were still using the Blacks as their slaves was very uncouth. The brutality that they experienced during this time is the main reason why Leon (1978), wishes that the Black people be compensated.

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Therefore, in my community I would say that racism is not that intense although it still exists. The people living there have learnt to accept everyone the way they are because people will always be different whether it is physically or culturally. The leadership also is picking pace and hopefully everything will be looked at fairly and in a just manner.

Reference

Moore, H. J. (n. d). Scientific racism and its history. Encyclopedia of race and racism. 3, 1-246. 2010. Web.

Harper, R. S. , Lori D. P. , Ontario S. W. (2009). Access and equity for African American students in higher education: A critical race historical analysis of policy efforts. Journal of Higher Education, 80, n. pag. Web.

Higginbotham, L. A. (1978). In matter of color: Race and the American legal process. New York: Oxford University Press.

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