Racism in Our Society Essay examples
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Racism in Our Society
Race relations are becoming increasingly important in our civilization. Despite this increasing importance, the question, 'Is our society racist?' is commonly debated. After investigating this subject, it is evident to me that American society is racist. There are various definitions of both racism and society. It is important to clearly define these terms when addressing such a controversial and emotional issue. 'Racism' is defined by Merriam-Webster as "a belief that race is the primary determinant of human traits and capacities and that racial differences produce an inherent superiority of a particular race" or "racial prejudice or discrimination". The latter of these two definitions is what I will use…show more content…
The Civil War itself took place in large part because of racism via slavery. Although the side favoring an end to slavery won the war, this heightened racism in many ways. No longer in control of the black population in the South, many white landowners' hate towards blacks grew. They could not handle that blacks might actually be considered human. This rage led to violent lynching and murders. Although slavery was ended by means of the Civil War, violent acts against blacks in the south continued. The racism following the Civil War continued well into the 20th century. By the 1950's, discrimination had become such a problem in society that politicians became greatly involved in trying to equalize the rights of minorities with those of the majority. This effort for equality by politicians furthered hate and suffering for minorities in America. Incidents such as the bombing in Mississippi and the burning of many black churches in the South spread throughout much of America. Finally, by 1964, minorities were granted equal rights in society. These equal rights, however, were in writing only and not strictly enforced. Racism continued to fester in various areas of America. The spread of racism has continued into present society. Church burnings in the South continue despite society's self-proclaimed tolerance of minorities. Along with these acts of hate, there are numerous hate groups that
Racism essay sample
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Racism is one of the most important social issues of the modern world. It has affected millions of people worldwide, and is one of the deepest social problems in history. The history of what we call racism which is the discrimination of other groups on the basis of their different descent begins in the Early Modern Period. This worldwide issue has caused countless problems so it is imperative they we analyze this in order to better understand it. We will look at the origins of racism, its history, and its decline in the present alongside remaining vestiges of racism in our society.
To begin our discussion we will look at the origins of racism. The word racism comes from the German word rassen which meant “breed”. The early European explorers and colonists in the Americas and elsewhere viewed different peoples as having a different descent, and attributed to this descent different properties. They viewed different races as being superior or inferior to one another largely based on their perception of how they related to themselves. This would have a horrible effect on the relations between races in the following centuries as European colonial armies spread out in all directions of the world.
As Europeans colonized new areas of the world they would initiate caste systems of racial discrimination and rank the races as they saw fit. Over the centuries in what would become America as well as Central and South America many Africans had been brought as slaves because the Europeans felt they were an inferior slave race. As time passed and intellect and morality progressed people began to question this and to oppose it. New movements arose fighting for equality. This took its greatest form in the American Civil War. Over half a million people died in the war for the freedom and equality of African slaves.
Though the Civil War ended slavery discrimination lingered on in the form of Jim Crow laws and other forms of racial discrimination in the legal and social framework of the country and created deep tensions between many parts of the country. This would come to an end when the Civil Rights Movement was born in the 1950’s and 1960’s. This movement pushing for an end to racial discrimination and segregation would be lead by such great figures as Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. With a great push by the Civil Rights Movement and many Americans increasing concern with social causes segregation and discrimination would be ended though for many they would linger on in their attitudes and viewpoints concerning other races. The history of racism has been a long and frightening one having brought such terrors as slavery and the holocaust. We must be always vigilant that this evil does not bring ruin yet again.