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Why Happening Draws attention rather than a Fore Lasting Prejudice

Racism is a prevailing concept in certain societies, where the societies are divided based on ethnicity, in which one group considers itself superior to the other and discriminates, antagonizes and subjugate the minority community. It has led people to bring a revolution and eradicate this false understanding of superiority and ascendancy, but, still, somewhere, when we see it from the bottom edge, it persists very actively and has caused immense harm to the humanity.

This article enlightens the face of the 21st century where human rights are one of the most widely discussed topics and at the same time, human rights have been violated the most in this century. An attempt has been made through this article to express our views simply and succinctly how these rights are violated blatantly in today's time. The central challenge to the world is to overcome it and to make it a thing of the past.

I refuse to accept the view that mankind is so tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war that the bright daybreak of peace and brotherhood can never become a reality. - Martin Luther King Jr.

Prominent leaders like Martin Luther King, Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela have raised their voices against the oppressing classes to safeguard the interest of the marginalized sections. But despite decades of patronizing them, we have failed to inculcate their values and their dream of a society where there is a feeling of fraternity among the Whites and Blacks.

The incident of George Floyd has gained traction across the world. But is this necessary that we need to come up with an example every time to fight with this deep-rooted crisis? We just raise our voice on any issue when an incident takes place and forget about it after some time.

The Police Administration has never taken their concerns seriously and, indeed, they are the ones who have exploited them. They have zapped lakhs of blacks, but remained devoid of vaccination, for example, Stephon Clark was killed when he was just holding the mobile phone in his hand and the police shot him believing that he was holding a gun.[1]

The similar incident happened with Botham Jean, who was shot by off duty police officer by referring to his apartment as hers[2]. The most ironic and scathic element is that the country which portrays itself as the pioneer of human rights, the country which criticizes the world and denigrates others in the name of discriminatory acts is itself the hub of human behaviour meted out to its certain group of people in the name of skin colour. Yes! We are talking about America, which has failed miserably in protecting its people from racism.

Civil Rights Movement And Today's Scenario

1619 was the year when the first slaves were brought to America. At that time, elites and the Whites used to rely mainly on indentured labour. But subsequently, there was a decline in such type of labourers, and slavery became a common phenomenon. Their lives were made difficult by forcing them to work hard and compelling them to obey the orders of their master without any resistance. The tension between the northern and southern regions started to boil because the southern region was full of Whites, who were dependent on the slaves concentrated in the northern regions[3].

The American Civil War, 1861 paved the way for the embryonic success, when the 13th Amendment came into force in the U.S. Constitution[4]. It stated that neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime where the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the U.S. or any place subject to their jurisdiction. And finally, the Civil Rights Act of 1866 was passed, which invalidated the Black Codes.[5]

But, as the 19th century came to its denouement, violence against blacks started in the South. On 28 August 1963, Martin Luther King Jr. gave a speech insisting on his dream of harmony between whites and blacks. His mesmerizing words I have a dream put an immense influence on the masses and proved to be one of the greatest speeches in history. John F Kennedy introduced new civil rights but was assassinated on 22 November 1963, which in turn shouldered the responsibility of creating Great Society for the Americans on Lyndon B Johnson. At its primary level, the Act desegregated the public accommodations, bus depots, parks, swimming pools, restaurants and many more.

It established the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The voting rights were also given by the 15th Amendment and overruled the literacy tests as the requirement for voting. But it looks like that racism has still not been eroded. The anti-discrimination laws have failed to an extent to safeguard its people. Racial disparities have persisted and flourished actively.

It can be best substantiated by the unemployment rates. Bureau of Labour Statistics in its report in 2013 provided that the jobless rates among whites were 6.6% and 12.6% among the blacks, which is close to twice the unemployment rate of whites and blacks are the last one to be hired and the first one to be fired when there is a depression in the market[6]. It completely infringes the SEC. 703 (a) of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.[7] Secondly, the discrimination meted out to black students in schools has swollen. In 1954, the SC of U.S. said that the separate schools, based on skin colour are unconstitutional in Brown v Board of Education[8].

It was encapsulated in SEC. 601 of Title VI to protect people from discrimination based on race, colour and origin in receiving the federal financial assistance. This gap has further widened in Donald Trump's reign. A study conducted by the National Association for Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) demonstrates that the racially motivated crimes account for nearly 60% of total crimes in the U.S.A., even when it has ratified the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) in 1994.[9]

It is not only isolated to America but can be seen in different countries of the world, like pygmies (short people in Central Africa) are lynched by Bantus, North-Eastern people in India are subjected to racial slurs, Rohingya in Myanmar are forced to flee by extremist Buddhists.

Over the period, it has affected millions, but still, change is yet to be seen. So, it becomes necessary that the feeble voices must be turned to concrete action, to restore the faith of the minorities in the Justice System.

Bawling slogans like #BlackLivesMatter is not going to revamp the existing circumstances until Blacks themselves realize their rights. They still accept that since they are blacks, they will always face such type of discrimination and they should be ready to face such type of subjugation. This mentality must be remodelled, and the blacks must stand up for their rights. It is not every time that an issue must come to light, and then you fight against it.

As a youth of the nation, we need to understand that there is no difference between the lives of Blacks and Whites. Both are Americans! Both of them are human beings! Hence, each of them should be treated at par. It is also not viable that we concentrate only on the lives of Blacks, instead, we should focus on Equal Human Rights. Every one of us should strive and work for the betterment of others, which is the best and the purest way in which we can create a society of equals.

Conclusion
It is disheartening to note that in the 21st century, where technological advancement has reached its epitome, scores of human rights legislation have been enacted, but still the orthodoxical mindset is there, where it was. Incident of George Floyd came to highlight after the video that went viral on various social media platforms. But this was just one instance, there are thousands of occurrences that are undergoing behind the curtains and still devoid of justice. So, it is high time that we should realize the rights of the Blacks and pull together to conquer this deeply rooted crisis.

End-Notes:
  1. Alia Chughtai, Know their Names: Black People Killed by the Police in the US, ALJAZEERA, https://interactive.aljazeera.com/aje/2020/know-their-names/index.html.
  2. Ibid
  3. History.com Editors, Black History: Milestone Timeline, HISTORY, Nov 16, 2018, https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/black-history-milestones.
  4. Hisory.com Editors, 13th Amendment, HISTORY, Nov 9, 2020, https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/thirteenth-amendment.
  5. Hisory.com Editors, Black Codes, HISTORY, June 1, 2010, https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/black-codes
  6. Drew Desilver, Black unemployment rate is consistently twice that of whites, PEW RESEARCH CENTRE, Aug 21, 2013, https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2013/08/21/through-good-times-and-bad-black-unemployment-is-consistently-double-that-of-whites
  7. FindLaw's Team, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964: Equal Employment Opportunity, FINDLAW, Dec 5, 2018, https://employment.findlaw.com/employment-discrimination/title-vii-of-the-civil-rights-act-of-1964-equal-employment.html
  8. Hisory.com Editors, Brown v. Board of Education, HISTORY, Oct 27, 2009, https://www.history.com/topics/black-history/brown-v-board-of-education-of-topeka
  9. NAACP Sees Continued Rise In Hate Crimes, Legacy Of Trump's Racism, NAACP, June 29, 2018, https://www.naacp.org/latest/naacp-sees-continued-rise-hate-crimes-legacy-trumps-racism/

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