Life Of Black Community: Then VS Now

"Segregated Schools Must Stop Now! We Demand Equal Rights Now! Segregation is morally wrong!" Chants of the 1960 Civil Rights Movement March led by Martin Luther King Jr. What has changed since then?

The continuing disparity between Black and white life opportunities is not a result of Black life choices. It greatly stems from an epidemic of extreme racism and an economic system dependent on class and race division.

As a Black community, we take a good look at our fight in the past and now in the quest for liberation, justice and equality in the alleged “Land of the Free”. The subsequent paragraphs grants us meaning into our discussion:

Civil rights movement

A quick look at history informs us that the strategies of the 1960s movement were towards the advancement in civil rights through litigation, organization, mobilization and civil unrest. Soon after, effective electoral strategies started to dominate but were engendered by the 1965 Voting Rights Act. That led to a boost in the numbers of locally elected Black officials which was a real plus to our civil rights progress.

Then after, there was the call for a color-blind America- the goal of the affirmative action. The successes of the affirmative action were that in the late 1960s, the wages of Black women in the textile industry tripled, Black police officers more than doubled, Black electricians tripled and Black bank tellers quadrupled in number. The percentage of Blacks in managerial and technical jobs tremendously doubled. Same was experienced in the field of enrollment of students which increased from 330,000 in the 1960s to more than a million 18 years later.

Today Blacks are allowed to partake in all political activities but the minus is that, job opportunities for the Black race keeps narrowing up due to the created system to ‘save’ the white and oppress the Black. In effect, finances of Blacks and the Black community in general keep getting drier.

Racial segregation

In the so-called “Land of the free” there is “hyper-segregation” of facilities, services, and opportunities such as housing, medical care, education, employment, and transportation along the lines of racism and white supremacy. This is general discrimination against people of color by white communities.

There is the scenario of physical separation and the availability of so-called “separate but equal” facilities, which were actually separate but hardly equal. Racial discrimination is seen at play. For instance in the past Blacks weren’t allowed to bath is same bathrooms with their white counterparts

Legal segregation was another field of racial discrimination but was abolished in 1954 as a result of many civil rights demonstrations. Though abolished, De facto segregation — segregation “in fact”, without sanction of law — persists in different degrees and forms to the present day.

Contemporary racial segregation is seen in the United States in residential neighborhoods and in mortgage discrimination and financial redlining among other factors. An instance of the neighborhood segregation was when Black ghettos were created during the first half of the 20th century in order to isolate the Blacks from the whites.

Police brutality

Little was heard of police brutalities meted out on Blacks in the past as compared to these days. Maybe it was because of a number of yet-to-know factors out of which media participation is key. But of today, it seems the modern day brutalities can equally be compared to “lynching” which was the scenario during the colonial era.

police civil rights arrested development

Many human rights observers and activists keep showing the “red flag” to increased police brutality in recent times. Reports have it that, he U.S. after the attacks of September 11, 2001 has been living in the “War on Terror”. The “War on Terror” has created a climate of impunity for law enforcement officers, and contributed to the erosion of what few accountability mechanisms exist for civilian control over law enforcement agencies. As a result, police brutality and abuse persist unabated and undeterred across the country.

Slavery

In-depth Insight supplied by the African American experience brings modern slavery ever more vividly to life than ever. Moreover, and at least as important, comparisons drawn from the African American experience make manifest the deepest truth about slavery that Americans need to know no matter its location, dynamics, or history. Inescapable in every instance, past and present, is slavery’s detestable brutality and the categorical imperative to assist those ensnared in it. Its legacies, whatever its form and however abolished, extend most painfully into the present.

To illustrate this vital truth we turn next to the history of enslavement in the United States after the ending of the Civil War and to a prescient comment by the brilliant abolitionist Wendell Phillips in response to the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment in 1865: “We have abolished the slave: “The master remains.” The masters remain is an indication and confirmation of the present day Black oppression and inequality.

[Freedom From Mental Slavery]:

Denied effective legal representation, tens of thousands of African Americans convicted of any sort of crime found themselves shackled, transported long distances (sometimes in iron cages), and coerced at gunpoint to work long and excessively hard for not just the state, but for large private businesses. Prison officials extended sentences as it suited them. Resistance meant beatings, deprivation of food and water, extended isolation, and the risk of being murdered. Such repeats itself in present day America.

Education

The idea of Black education arose in 1833, from Boston abolitionists David Lee Child and Lydia Maria Francis Child. Although the idea was shocking, Prudence Crandall announced that she wanted to open a school to educate Black girls in Connecticut. Prudence was greatly persecuted for even perceiving that idea. In the 1880’s, segregation in the schools started surfacing in every U.S. state. Worse of it all, the Supreme Court upheld racial segregation in the case of Plessy vs. Ferguson, by stating that “separate but equal is constitutional”.

012914-National-Segregation-Then-and-Now-Segregation-Protest

Today, racism has influenced education to a large extent. Well, research reveals that Black students are only 66 percent less likely to be admitted to special programs for talented students, even if they have equally high academic performance as Whites. For generations systemic racism has subjected students of color to all forms of discrimination – from lower university intakes and scholarship opportunities to fewer graduations from universities and colleges.

Worse of it all is that, it is reported that out of over 100 percent of students expelled from Dothan City schools, 87 percent of them were black, even though only 55 percent of the schools’ population is Black.

Such inhuman racial instances  has created a void in the system, in which more disadvantaged enthusiastic and hard working children of color break the shackles of not being white in America. And even when they do, they hardly gain grants to aid them make their education much easier.

Healthcare

The issue of segregation is highly recognized in the health field as far as the issue of “Black patient – white doctor” is concerned. Black Americans in the era of slavery were never given proper health care. They were made to live in dirt, no good water and no good food and were beaten and chained at the least offence. Many of those Black individual died.

Today, in the wake of the expansion of biomedical technology, advancement in medicine and increase in physicians in the United States, it is on record that the infant mortality rate in the Black population is twice that of whites. Black men are seven times more likely than white men to receive a diagnosis of HIV and more than twice as likely to die of prostate cancer. Black women have nearly double the obesity rate of white women and are 40 percent more likely to die from breast cancer. Black people experience much higher rate of hypertension, diabetes and stroke.
As of today, Blacks are given less quality health care in the U.S. ‘The flint water crisis’ where the government has turned deaf ears to a community of Black populace in need of good drinking water shows how Black lives health wise is in jeopardy.

Auto insurance

Every citizen including Blacks is allowed to own property in the U.S. One of these properties includes owning vehicles for personal use. In the past, Blacks were nowhere having properties of their own but as of today; Blacks are given the green light to do so. Despite the liberty to own cars, it is seen as a deliberate act of the government to suppress Blacks by demanding high Auto-insurance fees from Blacks than whites. Worse of it all, Police pullover Black drivers, harass them and in some instances kill them for no offence committed.

The aforementioned salient points are a few of the many areas of comparisons for Black lives then and now. It is believed that you enjoyed your reading ride which was informative,educative and quite revealing.

If so, kindly SHARE this article on any social media of your choice.

Thank you!
You have successfully subscribed!
We will be glad to enlighten you on
the life of the Black community.
Do you want to be notified?
Add meetup