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shrewsbury
07-12-2012, 06:30 PM
the issue of racism, and the stereotype of the whites being racist is the cause of non white peoples issues, is frustrating to me. there are certainly racists people, but this seems like an excuse rather than a reason. but because i only know so many people, it makes me wonder about the validity of these claims, which I am always interested in truth. in doing my daily poking around at this issue and others i found this article

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/12/michelle-alexander-more-black-men-in-prison-slaves-1850_n_1007368.html

stats are stats, but the rest is very racist though it is made out they they are pointing out racists.

I know this can be a touchy and hostile subject, so if you are going to post, be nice and wear your big boy (or girl) pants.

what do you think is wrong or right about this article?

Wickabee
07-12-2012, 06:39 PM
Well, the article seems to mostly just report on the book. My biggest problem in there is calling the War on Drugs a problem for blacks because I think it's a problem for everyone. You think money is being wasted on social programs? Look into what the war on drugs, particularly marijuana, has cost and the effect it has actually had.

Being Canadian, I don't have as much insight into this as the average American, I'm sure, but I do see both sides. It's true that the white man has kept other races down for a long time, I don't think anything current is for that purpose. There may be holdovers and such, but it isn't about race anymore, it's about class. These days a dirt-poor white kid isn't any better off than a dirt-poor black kid.

I think one of my favourite (paraphrased) quotes that relates to this came from Ice T. When asked what aspect of Barrack Obama's being elected President was most important for black people he replied, "We don't have any excuses any more. Now we know it IS possible for a black man to get to the top. We know that now. We know it's about hard work not the colour of your skin."

NY Sports Teams
07-12-2012, 08:18 PM
African Americans make up 13.6% of the U.S. population and 40.2% of all prison inmates. The stats speak for themselves, that's three times as many as should be by %. Should someone who is African American be allowed to commit whatever crimes he/she wants and be given a pass because of their race?

I've worked in law enforcement for over 25 years. Where I worked until recently when we moved we had a section of the city where crack and guns are a part of everyday life. If you make contact with an individual on a corner at 3am acting suspiciously you would hear, why are singling me/him out. But if you did not patrol the area you would hear, your not keeping us safe or protecting our property. Law enforcement is caught between a rock and a hard place. If 80% of the population in that section of town is African American than chances are someone acting suspiciously at 3am is African American.

I'm big on a strong family structure. For what it's worth here is my two cents. I believe it's a vicious cycle. Many/most of the kids I've dealt with over my career have fathers who were/are incarerated. These kids in turn commit crimes and themselves are confined. These kids who are now confined have already fathered kids and the cycle continues. It is not only the fathers, many of the mothers are addicted to drugs or are themselves incarcerated. Also, just because you have a mother and father in the picture does not mean all is good. If you do not have parents who are good role models and have good parenting skills you might as well not have them in the picture at all. Even the best of parents can have a bad apple.

When I first started out I wanted to get through to ONE kid and lead him on the right path. I would tell kids I was somewhat wild when I was young. I'd tell them I luckly made the right decision and joined the military before I was too far down the wrong path. Many would say you don't understand, I'm gangsta, I'm from the streets. I would respond, you're not gangsta coming from this little crap town. I served in the military with kids from the streets of NY, LA, Chicago, ect, they were gangsta. They made the right choice and changed the path that they were headed.

Do I believe that there are racists in this country? Of course, too many of them. One is too many. But I'm tired of seeing and hearing that I'm African American and that's why I'm singled out and everything negative that happens to me is because of my race. It's just an excuse. Until African Americans quit using the excuse and take a long look at themselves nothing will change. If you commit a crime it does not matter if you are white, black, whoever, your a criminal, not someone who is enslaved. Laws are laws, if you don't like the laws of this country move somewhere else.

I don't know how anyone can compare enslaved people to individuals who committed a crime(s) and are imprisoned. But now I see, The Huffington Post, a liberal publication that wants to placate to their masses. Comparing the two is nothing but a joke as is the source that created the story.

...Rick

andrewhoya
07-13-2012, 09:07 AM
Nice post, Rick.

mrveggieman
07-13-2012, 09:13 AM
As a blackman I can understand where the writer of the article is coming from. Even though the united states elected it's first of hopefully many african american presidents in President Obama, American still has a long way to go. Yes the criminal justice system is extremely racists and a lot of the school systems in our communities are a piece of trash we have to work with what we got. I am 37 years old, graduated from high school been to college, am married, has a job and has never been in trouble with the law. It was by no means easy but I did what I had to do to survive. Yes America is a racist country by nature but if blacks continue to fall into the traps that are laid out for us we will continue to get nowhere fast. The first thing we need to do is stop trying to tear each other down like people like herman cain and allan west do to president obama. Everyone talks about black kids calling people who make it out of the ghetto sellouts but look at what cain and west do to president obama. People like that are the biggest transgressors and need to be called out for doing so. They are setting a terrible example for our kids with their crab in the bucket mentality. We also need to take education seriously. I understand that we have a second class school system but the first education comes from home. If your kids are not getting enough education at school encourage them to learn on their own. Take them to the library and musuems. Teach them that our ancestors were more than slaves and that we came from kings and queens in Africa. Also teach them about the traps out there. Teach them to obstain from drugs, alcohol, tobacco and dangerous sexual behavior. Never drink, smoke or do drugs in front of your kids. Also teach your kids not do do dumb things that will draw the attention of law enforcement. As a black male I know that the police is gunning to get me. Why in the world would I want to do anything that would draw their attention?

11chaos
07-13-2012, 09:33 AM
Sadly there is racism no matter where you go.
If you're;
white and in East LA, you're there to buy drugs not because you're lost and don't know the area.
Black, Hispanic, Asian, or any other ethnicity / non-local in the Hamptons you're there to rape and pillage, not work at any of the service industries.
Pakistani, you're there to work at 7/11 and sell me a slurpee not be a Doctor like you were in your home country.
However Gang Bangers is America's or whatever country they reside in, Terrorist. If America took the war on drugs to the Gang Bangers it might make some head way.
I don't care what color, race or sex you are just respect what is mine, don't covet what is mine and take it. A Low Life is a low life end of story.

Star_Cards
07-13-2012, 09:38 AM
As a blackman I can understand where the writer of the article is coming from. Even though the united states elected it's first of hopefully many african american presidents in President Obama, American still has a long way to go. Yes the criminal justice system is extremely racists and a lot of the school systems in our communities are a piece of trash we have to work with what we got. I am 37 years old, graduated from high school been to college, am married, has a job and has never been in trouble with the law. It was by no means easy but I did what I had to do to survive. Yes America is a racist country by nature but if blacks continue to fall into the traps that are laid out for us we will continue to get nowhere fast. The first thing we need to do is stop trying to tear each other down like people like herman cain and allan west do to president obama. Everyone talks about black kids calling people who make it out of the ghetto sellouts but look at what cain and west do to president obama. People like that are the biggest transgressors and need to be called out for doing so. They are setting a terrible example for our kids with their crab in the bucket mentality. We also need to take education seriously. I understand that we have a second class school system but the first education comes from home. If your kids are not getting enough education at school encourage them to learn on their own. Take them to the library and musuems. Teach them that our ancestors were more than slaves and that we came from kings and queens in Africa. Also teach them about the traps out there. Teach them to obstain from drugs, alcohol, tobacco and dangerous sexual behavior. Never drink, smoke or do drugs in front of your kids. Also teach your kids not do do dumb things that will draw the attention of law enforcement. As a black male I know that the police is gunning to get me. Why in the world would I want to do anything that would draw their attention?

Being a white male, I certainly don't have the perspective of being a black male. I won't disagree that racism still exists in and out of the justice system, but I find that you said "if blacks continue to fall into the traps that are laid out for us we will continue to get nowhere fast" a little off putting. I don't disagree that there are many african americans who don't have the same opportunities that the typical middle class kid has growing up, but in the end if a person, no matter his race, makes a decision to get involved in criminal activity or not. I understand that there are circumstances where one may feel they need to do that to help support themselves or their family, but it's still a decision that they make, knowing the consequences.

I definitely agree that education is the key. Education leads to opportunity for every person, no matter their race.

*censored*
07-13-2012, 12:13 PM
I think it's a class problem first and foremost. As was previously said, dirt poor white and dirt poor black are both screwed. Taking that a step further, rich white and rich black have all the advantages.

I went to private schools my whole life. The one from K-8 was small and mostly white (of 19 graduates in my class, 16 were white, 2 black, 1 middle eastern). So that's 84% white.

But my high school is rated as one of the top 100 prep schools in the country. In a graduating class of 96, we had 70 white, 12 black, 7 Asian, 1 Indian (as in India Indian, not Native American Indian), and 6 mixed/other. So that's 73% white. Still mostly white, but a better representation of minority races.

If it were a case of racism being bigger than classism, then one should see the 73% of grads who are white landing better jobs than the 12.5% black minority. But it's not. At our 10-year reunion this past spring, sure, some had better jobs than others, but it wasn't divided among racial lines in any way.

And as said in the previous post, education is the key to all this.

Basically, I see it this way, to quote a sign my grandmother had in her house, "Life is like a piano: what you get out of it depends on how you play it."

And even if you want to claim racism, it comes in many different forms. It's not just some generic blanket thing and that's where my issue lies. Generally speaking, those to the left are more likely to say "Yes, we want you to get into positions of power, just don't live next door to me," while those to the right are more likely to say "Sure, live next door to me, we just don't want you getting into power." If you want to claim racism of any sort, be more specific than just throwing it out there as a generic claim.

*censored*
07-13-2012, 12:46 PM
To take it a step further from my previous post, claim all you want that it's because it's a private school and everyone there is rich. But that's not the case. I received 2/3 of my tuition via their financial aid and work study programs. And it's that way for a LOT of students. Hard work and knowing your talents (and using them) will trump race and class.

One of my best friends from high school is from Cleveland's east side. If you know about the city, you'll know that the Kinsman, Central, Hough, and East Cleveland neighborhoods aren't exactly the safest places in the world. Central and Kinsman have been going through some recent revitalization, but still, in the time frame I'm talking about (10-20 years ago) they were bad. He was from the Kinsman area.

Anyways, my high school offered (and still does offer) a summer program for academically gifted African-American youth to study at a summer camp type of program known as REACH. Most, if not all, of the educators involved are African-American, many of them being former students of the program. Up to 100 area students get enrolled at the end of their fifth grade year and go through the program over the next three summers. At the end, they get a counseling session on the best route for their academic future. The tuition is free, aside from a $50 deposit for field trips. But you have to work for it: you need perfect attendance at all their functions and must maintain a B average in school.

This has been a great help to education in the Cleveland area, whose schools have a sub-50% high school graduation rate. The friend I mentioned was one of those who got into the REACH program and eventually attended the school for middle and high school.

Currently, he has a BS in History from Case Western Reserve University and a Masters' in History from Cleveland State. Until recently, he has regularly acted in an improv comedy group, and is joining the faculty of Milton Academy in Massachusetts this fall. Milton is rated 9th on the Harvard-Yale-Princeton scale I mentioned earlier.

Funny story, every senior at our school has to get up and give a speech on a topic of their choosing. The best one gets an award at the end of the year. We had ours on back to back days, with total polar opposite topics. His was on how the REACH program pretty much saved him as a student and as a person, mine was on my inability to play any sports worth a crap while still being known as a sports guy.

We shared the Senior Speech Prize on Awards Day.

drtom2005
07-15-2012, 09:28 PM
I really agree with Censored. This is more a class issue. Where I work day to day, there are many low income white people being locked up all of the time.