Systematic racism in America hurts people of color worldwide, especially young black kids and teenagers. Our system is set for African Americans to fail. Standards are doubled, rules are broken, and stereotypes are made.
Young African Americans have higher standards compared to young Caucasians. During school, blacks are expected to participate in learning white history and be proud of our country and patriotic. Meanwhile during black history month students not of color grace past the history without any acknowledgment of the past. Teachers speed past black history month, not wanting or knowing how to respectfully teach or speak on the subject. In February of 2016 during a black history discussion, one of my classmates voiced their opinion that slaves were not helpful and that they “didn’t do much work”. When I responded to the student respectfully but with an angered tone I was asked to leave the classroom. From there, the issue was dismissed and my feelings mattered slim to none. My voice had been heard and ignored.
An eleven-year-old student in Florida refused to stand for the pledge of allegiance. This is an African American child who believes that the flag is racist towards black people and represents America poorly. According to Casey Quackenbush with Time newspaper, the Cuban teacher who was in charge commented to the child that he could “always go back to Africa, where he came from” because he thought America was so “unjustified”. If the situation had been different, and this would have been a caucasian child the teacher wouldn’t have treated the situation the same. The white kid’s behavior would be excused and punishment-free. Unlike the black child who was suspended for three days, arrested, and taken to a juvenile detention center. For African Americans, speaking out on what we believe in is perceived as an act of rebellion. For Caucasians, it’s seen as misguidance and a cry for help.
Blacks aren’t allowed to make mistakes in America. Jussie Smollett, a famous actor for the television show Empire, has recently been charged with faking his own assault in Chicago Illinois. Smollett announced to the public that he’d been attacked by Make America Great again supporters and they’d supposedly thrown bleach onto him, punched, kicked, and stomped on, and nearly lynched. Stereotypes have been created against Smollett and the black community that expresses all blacks are liars and will do the extreme for attention. Nineteen-year-old Nikki Yovino claimed she had been sexually assaulted by two African American football players from Sacred Heart University. The two men lost their football scholarships, were expelled from school, and their lives were ruined. It’s hard being a black man in America, even harder being an accused black man of sexual assault. No one would hire these two men, little did the public know, the two young men were completely innocent of all charges. Months later Yovino admitted to the police station that she lied, and accused the men of rape because she wanted attention from a white guy who hadn’t shown her much attention. Yovino provided false information to the police and was only sentenced to one year in jail. Meanwhile, Smollett had been bashed on social media and named “The man who ruined black history month”. Smollett’s case is still in session, but he had to pay a bond ten percent of a one hundred thousand dollar bond, which is ten thousand dollars. Ten thousand dollars just to grant the ability to return home until his next trial date. Double standards have been shown throughout this case. It’s unfair for Smollett to have to pay such a high price for participating in a similar crime as Yovino.
Life in America has always been unfair educationally and racially, systematic racism started here in America when our country was first colonized by the Indians. White superiority will not be the destruction end to the black community. We always find ways to rebel against supremacists, gain our freedom, earn our rights, and be working members of this society. It’s in our blood to speak out against society, as Dr.Martin Luther King Jr said, “Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that start to matter”.
As we citizens of the United States of America acknowledge the elephant in front of us but are not willing to look at the elephant as a whole. We are completely repeating history over again, just in a different manner. A less verbal and physically violent manner than the fifteen hundreds, and In order for us to succeed as a whole we have to be willing to understand each other and be willing to acknowledge our common goal for America, financially stable and an America with less racism and more understanding.