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Institutional Racism in American Society [Author] [Institution] Institutional Racism in American Society Racism has long been the problem in the American society. It is not surprising to say that ‘the persistence of race problems has something to do with how our institutions operate” (Rosenblum, Travis, 2008)…
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al Racism in American Society al Racism in American Society Racism has long been the problem in the American society. It is not surprising to say that ‘the persistence of race problems has something to do with how our institutions operate” (Rosenblum, Travis, 2008). Institutional racism is when the institutions such as healthcare organizations, businesses, religious institutions, educational universities and the legal system contribute in developing racial conflicts among the people in the society. Individual racism existed in America since the time it became an independent nation in 1776, and has shaped the society into many different groups. But more importantly, the way the institutions operate in the society affect the structure of racism as institutionally it is done on a collective level rather individually; hence more powerful. The American society has formed two major groups; the blacks and the whites. The biggest example of racism in America is seen against the blacks who are the African Americans. This racism has not ignited just by the participation of individuals, but also the institutions. Slavery and segregation in many institutions such as churches and the legal system has contributed to the persistence of racial problems in the society. In other institutions such as healthcare organizations, there have been unethical practices and experiments using the blacks and other minorities who are still getting the substandard treatment. Educational institutions start operating and perpetuating racial inequalities amongst the students from a very early level. If the institutional racism is not wiped away from the society, there is no chance that the racial problems, discriminations and inequalities will ever come to an end. However, when these important institutions of the society act racist against certain groups, the society is bound to be affected (Rosenblum, Travis, 2008). Throughout the history of America, the institution of slavery has perpetuated racial problems in the society more than any other institution. The slavery that existed greatly in the past has left a severe impact on the minds and attitudes of people today; both the blacks and whites. However, even today slavery has continued to impact the racist behaviors, attitudes and discriminative mindsets of people throughout America. The 1992 Annual Meeting in San Francisco, California addressed the racism issue and the role of law. They suggested that the institution of slavery has been so powerful that even after years of its abolishment by the legal system; it is still seen in some parts. The legislation was passed at a time when the slavery had already hit the minds and attitudes of people. This is why the blacks had to suffer the severe after-effects which included attempts to enforce slavery or racist attitudes towards them. These attitudes are still observed at individual level as adopted by the institutions (Dadisman, 1992). The medical institutions also perpetuated the race problems in the society by the ways they have operated since decades and still. The racial discrimination already existing in the society at institutional and individual level has influences the healthcare system too. Some of the worst scenes that have ever been recorded in the history of America are when the government agencies and medical institutions allowed the mentally ill black patients to suffer from deadly diseases and sexually transferred infections. The black women of Native America and North Carolina were also sterilized. Such operations of racism are still observed but in a different manner. Today racism exists in these institutions in a different way. The black patients would be less prioritized under the white patients. Other than that, it was recorded in a study that the black scientists ‘are less likely than whites to receive research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIH)”. The study also showed that the percentage of black scientists participating in research studies is much lower than whites; this means the problem of racism does not start from the medical institutions, but greatly from the educational institutions (LC-GC North America, 2011). In this way, the other individuals of the society are also reclined towards the practice of discrimination. Many theorists and sociologists believe that educational institutions can play a huge role in eliminating the racial problems and in igniting them. This is because of the primary education children get at schools after their homes. If the teacher educates the students about equality, they will apply it in their lives and further in the society and vice versa. Moreover, the Journal of Blacks in Higher Education shows that blacks still suffer discrimination in their college enrollments and other processes such as financial aid programs. Other than that on an individual basis many white teachers or students may discriminate against blacks or pass racist comments which affect the performance of black students immensely. The school curriculums teach the students about the history of blacks and slavery in America which affects the minds of the young students. In these ways, the educational institutions’ operations ignite the long lasting racial problems amongst the blacks, whites and other minority groups. “In school, children can learn to understand the wounds that racism has inflicted on them and on our society and learn to understand that being different does not mean being inferior. If schools can teach that lesson, then they will be helping to nurture the hope that someday, indeed, we shall overcome (Molnar, 1989, p. 72)”. The religious institutions have also greatly contributed in perpetuating the racial problems. Again, when discrimination is seen is a holy institution, the young students and children get the idea that it is a part of religion and thus start applying it. Recently many churches have apologized for alienating the blacks and other minorities and attempted to encourage diversity in the churches (Bergen, 2011, p. 76). However, there are still unnoticeable segregations in churches that exist. In order to solve this problem, the institutions must practice equality amongst all the people as mentioned in the fourteenth amendment of the U.S. Constitution that every person born in the U.S. is an equal citizen. However, it is true that the persistence of racial problems has something to do with the ways our institutions operate. There is no institution from where racism is fully eliminated thus children and other people of the society learn to adopt these behaviors even if they personally do not accept them. References Molnar A. (1989). Racism in America: A Continuing Dilemma. Texas: Educational Leadership LC-GC North America (2011). Black Investigators Less Likely to be Awarded NIH Grants. NY: National Institutes of Health (U.S) Dadisman M. (1992). Racism in America: ‘The struggle will define us.” Human Rights Rosenblum K., Travis T. (2008). The Meaning of Difference: American Constructions of Race, Sex and Gender, Social Class, Sexual Orientation, and Disability. London: McGraw-Hill Bergen J. (2011). Ecclesial Repentance: The Churches Confront Their Sinful Pasts. India: Continnum Read More
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