It’s not apparent and upfront, and you don’t see black men beaten and bloody, chained together walking down busy streets. You don’t see black women in fields with their young babies wrapped in their bosom, as they pick cotton until their finger tips are bloody and numb. Slavery dates back to biblical times. Land was conquered and the people living in that area were taken captive. It has progressed through centuries and still is present in today’s society.
The brute of the force is inflicted by Black Americans as they progress through life. The education systems in Black neighborhoods, for Black children are weak and provide unsatisfactory instruction to the future. The living conditions in these neighborhoods are horrific and trap the residents in gentrification, making a move to a better environment impossible. Wages and wealth have always left Black Americans in the lower earning percentile as their white counter parts soured to the top, by accruing assets easier than African Americans.
These issues stem from a time period when Black America were considered three fourths of a person, however in the 21st century you don’t see slavery portrayed in the typical ways we have all read in our text books. Instead it has taken on a revamped modified form that still has the debilitating effect it did 400 years ago. The effect of slavery has left an imprint on the black community as shown in today’s education systems, living conditions, and in wealth. Education is the key to success, and slave owners knew when their slaves started learning how to read and write, emancipation was near.
The Freedmen’s Bureau was established in 1865 by former slaves to help themselves and poor whites after the Civil War. When the Freedmen’s Bureau took over board schools in Louisiana financially supporting these schools was difficult. When the freed people were trying to get the school support by a general tax, they were met with opposition. Because of the inability to contribute to teacher salaries, and maintenance of the schools many of these board schools were closed. After the Civil War, schools for black children became the subject of legislative sessions (Mitchell 191).
Freed people organized to raise school funds for their children, but these schools became targets for the Ku Klux Klan. As a result the creation of schools to benefit the political and economic future of all people was met with fierce and violent opposition (Mitchell 192). These schools challenged the professed superiority of the white race and also threatened the existence of an unschooled black labor force (Mitchell 369). An educated black child and the state of the educational system were always viewed by white politicians based on how it would affect white people.
This is infuriating because everyone has the right to an education regardless of ethnic back ground, color, or social status. To try to stump another race while you advance with your own is selfish. Even as a politician you are in a position to promote the greater good of everybody. Education has always been used as a force to break through. When you start acquiring new knowledge and thinking for yourself you start change. While the Freedmen’s Bureau tried to raise money and hire teachers white politicians knew this would start a rebellion against the current unjust political system.
Still today in 2016 education for Black people is unsatisfactory and very little is being done to improve it. Our educational system is still in the hands of white legislators who continuously keep our educational system substandard. Fast-forward 150 years postCivil War these same issues exist in our educational system. The national graduation rate for Black males 2012-13 was 59%, 65% for Latino males, and 80% for White males. In a study performed by the Schott Foundation, this gap has widened between Black and White Males increasing 19% in the 2009 school year to 21% in the 2012 school year.
This shows that black males are falling behind their white counterparts. This below average standard is perfect to keep our black males below standard and keep them trapped in poverty. This locks Black males out of academic opportunities that is essential for postsecondary education and creates a pathway out of poverty. This educational gap is also an opportunity gap that in the long run deprives the Black community and the nation of the talents and potential contributions that could be made. These unfortunate situations exist but there are proven methods being done to close this gap.
To address the root cause of failing education we can’t overlook the racism that establishes these barriers in our communities Black students are in classrooms where two-thirds of their peers are minorities. Within these schools teachers don’t have the adequate experience to teach and faculties are dilapidated. The face of American education has become 40% ethnic majority and during the next 20 years Blacks and Latinos will fill over half of the nation’s schools (Garcia 96). The Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) is America’s promise of equal opportunity however one of the elements of this law was disaggregated data.
This was designed to show achievement gaps which in turn would prompt interventions for students who need it. However since this act was enacted in 1965this has not happened. In December 2015 the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) was signed to revamp the 50 year-old ESEA From this latest act (U. S Department of Education). This new act includes provisions that will maintain an expectation that there will be accountability and action to effect positive change in our lowest-performing schools, where groups of students are not making progress, and where graduation rates are low over extended periods of time.
With the new revamped act it could possibly help the state of our education system; however it won’t stop the current deterioration of our black educational system. Living conditions in poverty stricken homes of African Americans are unbelievable. Even outside the front door the surrounding area is run down and toxic. Establishing somewhere to live is almost impossible due to gentrification and loan complications for black borrowers that have a steady income and assets. Black neighborhoods continue to bear the brunt of hazardous-waste sources placed illegally close to their homes.
University of Central Florida researchers found that Blacks usually live closer than whites to a wide array of pollution sources(Quintana 68). Although Computer databases discovered that majority of f these communities receive more than their share of pollution from various sources. These hazardous sites have been able to stay operating because local governments have ignored the race issue and made clear that it doesn’t matter. Since these neighborhoods have a majority black population it is easy to blame other sources and not find a definite solution to the problem.
Without formal evidence it’s impossible to verify the hazards and if they extend beyond the source’s property line. Housing segregation in the United States has developed slowly and turned into what we know as the urban ghetto. Back in the times when African Americans worked alongside their white employers they also lived in slave quarters not far from the slave owner’s house. Even after the Civil War when African Americans migrated to the North and commonly interacted with whites. The ghettos started developing deliberately as a result of the federal, state and local governments efforts to maintain segregation (Seitles).
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) adopted practices of “red lining” this is a rating system used to discriminate by evaluating the risks associated with loans made to borrowers in certain neighborhoods (Brown-Saracino 256). The FHA was set up to be a “protector of all white neighborhoods”, using agents to “keep Negroes and other minorities from buying houses in white neighborhoods. ” In 1991 57% of American families couldn’t afford a median-priced home in the area they lived in.
African Americans were disproportionately affected because they make up 75% of these families. 30% of African Americans live in neighborhoods that are 90% or more black (Brown-Saracino 256). Schools and neighborhoods have a direct connection on success rate in school. As a result when black families are excluded from certain neighborhoods that automatically cuts them out of an improved school zone. In a nationwide study black students in the north who attended racially mixed schools were more likely to attend college than those who went to all-black schools.
On the California Achievement Test, 17% of Philadelphia students enrolled in racially mixed schools scored above the eighty-fifth percentile, while only 4% of the students enrolled in all-black schools achieved such a score (Brown-Saracinio 260). Along with failing education system in these African American neighborhoods, health risks, and community safety is also an issue. These issues stem from the enslaved time period when slaves were housed in substandard slave quarters with barely enough food and inadequate sanitary conditions. Educational, occupational, and income levels among black families are lower than wealth among white families.
The wide gap in finance between these two is not fully based on the median income of the family, but a lack of assets from which to draw from. In society today financial prosperity is linked to assets and making money grow. Sociologists Melvin Oliver and Thomas Shaprio claim that wealth is central nature of black – white inequality and wealth represents a long history of race inequality (Conley 120). While America is known for equal opportunity, all people deserve equal respect. African Americans move up into professional or managerial positions slower than their white counter parts, if they get the job in the first place.
In 1964, only 9. 4% of African Americans held professional positions, compared to 27. 7% of white people. (Conley 125)This the downward effect of poor educational systems and unsatisfactory living conditions are displayed in the socioeconomic indicators in the workplace. In conclusion being a black man, woman, or child in 2016 is not vastly different from 50 years ago. Little advancement has been made make life easier and more just. We don’t see bloody men chained together being humiliated but that has been replaced with black men dropping out of high school.
Black mothers are no longer in the field working to make a small income. They are now in unemployment offices begging for a job to make a few dollars. In my research I have found that just because something changes form, it is still what it was before. Modern slavery shouldn’t exist today with all the luxuries we have here in the United States. To send a man to the moon and back but still have major issues that need resolve here at home is shocking. Maybe one day we’ll all truly be free from the punishment of being a Black American.