Thursday, October 10, 2019

Discrimination Concerning African Americans Essay

Differences in race lead to divergent levels of economic development within the United States. Analysts often try to explain this phenomenon by observing a specific ethnic group’s tradition and cultural ideology. Economists expand their analysis on the economic behaviors of African Americans by taking into consideration personal histories and value systems of the group under study. American families measure economic status in terms of income, and factors associated with material security as a whole. These factors may consist of health care, college funds, and retirement plans. However, African American families lag well behind when conceptualizing economic development under these terms. The reason is due to numerous instances of discrimination that occur in the U. S. Many of America’s public policies aid in the underdevelopment of non-white families. Increased economic development within America is the key to upward political and social mobility. If minorities are denied inevitable rights to equality, access to economic development becomes a highly difficult process. Despite America’s idealized view on equal opportunity, it is valid to assume that economic security has been limited on the basis of race. Therefore, it is important to investigate why white American families are economically better-off than non-white American families. One must take into account aspects of political participation, education, and the number of children a family has in the home in order to understand this research question. Contemporary Viewpoints: The lack of political participation of minority groups is a prevalent issue within the United States, explaining why non-white American families are less economically developed when compared to white American families. According to Douglas S. Massey (1995), minority families increasingly speak languages and bear cultures quite different than the established norms within the U. S. regime. He has found that ethnic groups carry their customs into new generations, leading many non-white families to become displaced and impoverished. Brinck Kerr and Will Miller (1997) believe that it is necessary for non-white American families to participate in elections in order to obtain equal representation that they are now lacking. They go on to say that political representation is the key to higher employment levels, and is a significant determinant to the minority share of professional positions. William H. Frey (1996) finds that immigrants usually encounter highly stratified society characterized by high income inequality leaving little room for upward mobility. In addition, Paula D. Mcklain (1990) assumes that non-white American families will continue to reside in low economic subcultures that are institutionally incomplete if they are represented at much lower ratios relative to the population portions of whites. Susan Welch (1990) has found that minority groups have not even achieved half their population proportions in political elections. These numbers are even lower than what they were a decade ago. She states that other factors that lead to low political participation within minority groups is that a substantial number of non-white American families are not citizens, and therefore are not eligible to vote. Also, Massey has found that America enacts policies that hinder the socioeconomic status of immigrants for they are underrepresented at virtually all levels and institutions in United States government. Moreover, Friedberg and Hunt (1995) have found that non-white American families receive less benefits than white families because of geographic segregation within the community. The various dispersion of minority families in different low-income areas within the U. S. makes it difficult for these families to be represented proportionally. Consequently, Rodney E. Hero and Caroline J. Tolbert (1995) believe minority families can now be easily manipulated by government because they are not equally accounted for. Therefore, non-white American families are not able to take advantage of economically developed determinants such as health care and retirement funds. The inscription of the Statue of liberty expresses to the world to â€Å"give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free†¦. † America continuously contradicts itself on the validity of this concept due to the increasingly economic tension between Caucasian and non-white families. Friedberg and Hunt (1995) give the example of Proposition 187, which makes many non-white American families ineligible for certain services such as public health. Non-white American families are not given the opportunity to take advantage of benefactors the U. S. offers to white American families. Therefore, Non-white American families lack of political participation, and unequal representation in governmental institutions and legislative bodies, leads them to be less economically developed than white American families. Education is another obstacle to economic development that non-white families face. Education is a vital tool to economic security. However, Melissa Marschall (1997) has found that current policies demonstrate minorities have been denied equal access to education. She has found that assignment systems based on assessments of language deficiencies or other individual needs are used to separate non-whites from whites. According to Jeffrey J. Mondack and Diana C. Mutz (1997), inequitable school financing is equally detrimental to non-white students. Funding for public schools comes from property taxes. They go along to say that predomintly non-white schools tend to be in central inner city school districts which have a smaller property tax base. In addition, the Office of Civil Rights has identified practices that are termed â€Å"second generation school discrimination†. Practices such as ability grouping, suspensions, and tracking may appear on the surface to be normal educational practices. When examining these components closer, Brick Kerr and Will Miller (1997) have found they have a negative impact on minority students. Ability grouping is a form of segregation that separates minority students from whites. They have found that before even attempting to teach non-white students, they are diagnosed with having linguistic or intellectual problems. The students are therefore required to take special and bilingual classes, making it difficult for them to succeed. According to Robert E. England (1986), non-white students are many times pulled out of regular classes and placed into bilingual classes only on the basis of ethnicity rather than their understanding of English. Brick and Miller go on to explain that suspensions are a second tactic used to encourage the failure of minority students in school. Non-white students are given more harsh disciplinary sentences than white students. Moreover, studies show that the ratio of minority students kicked out of school is disproportionately higher than whites, making the students more likely to drop out. Marschall has found that schools also advocate differences in ability grouping and discipline, leading to distinctions in tracking between non-whites and whites. The majority white students in high ability groups are often counseled to choose college preparatory tracks. However, minorities in low ability groups are counseled into vocational or general tracks, making them less likely to attend post-secondary education. Mondack and Mutz believe that the overall pattern of racial inequality the school system has created makes non-whites less likely to receive a quality education than whites. This truth makes it difficult for economic development to occur within non-white American families. The number of children in a family lead to increased poverty levels and low economic development within non-white American families. M. Klitsch (1990) has found that minority women have children at an extensively higher rate than that of white women. Also, he states that non-white women represent a small percentage of the population, however they account for a greater number of births. Alejandro Portes and Cynthia Truelove (1987) go on to say that non-white families are generally poorer than white families because of the higher number of children in the home. This leads them to be more likely to live below the poverty line. In addition, Genevieve M. Kenney and Nancy E. Reichman (1998) have found the population of non-whites increases faster than whites every year due to high fertility rates. Similarly, the two have found that fertility rates of non-whites families living in impoverished communities is almost double compared to white families. Klitsch has found that non-white families have an estimated 5. 5 people to a household, while white families only 3. 8. Therefore, these high rates lead to low socioeconomic status, and limited opportunities to increase economic security. According to Kenney and Reichman, the high fertility rates are due to low percentages of minorities who use contraceptives. They have also found that non-white women are less likely to have an abortion than white women. One might view this as a positive aspect. However, Portes and Truelove believe that one must take into account the over a quarter of minority families who have an income below the federal poverty line, which is almost one half greater than those of white families. Therefore, the high number of children within non-white American families make them more likely to experience economic deprivation than white American families. There has been an abundance of scholarly research previously conducted on the economic differences between white and non-white American families. They usually consist of data sources such as the U. S. Immigration and Naturalization Service, and the U. S. bureau of the Census. The Foreign Born Population of the United States and Statistical Reports are used with the previously listed sources to compare ethnic groups (Friedberg and Hunt, pg. 5). These databases yield cross-sectional designs that develop into time series reports in order to make assumptions on variables dealing with GNP and income, proving distinct differences in the races under study. For instance, researchers assume that white families are more economically developed than non-whites. This is because the average white American family makes $44,000 a year, and the average non-white American family does not make half this amount (6-7). These figures are valid in drawing conclusions about correlative relationships, satisfying important ideological factors necessary to study when dealing with the dependent variable of race. A more effective method of analysis was a study derived from interviews in a low income Los Angeles county. The participants were white and non-white females. The study was conducted between January 1984 and May 1985 (M. Kitsch, 136-137). In addition, the sample consisted of a three-stage cluster of census tracks, blocks, and household addresses. This cross-sectional design embodied research dealing with fertility rates of different races. The minority women proved to have higher fertility rates in low income sectors, leading Klitsch to question the different ways non-white American families conceptualize economic development. Non-white American families have to deal with numerous accounts of racial discrimination. It is difficult for a non-white American family to become economically stable in terms of income and security plans. The reason is due to being a minority in a predominately white America. Therefore, non-white American families are less economically developed than white American families because: H1 non-white American families are less likely to participate in elections than white American families. H2 non-white Americans are more likely to be discriminated against in school than white Americans. H3 the more children in a household, the more likely a family will be economically deprived. Implications and Conclusion: Education, political participation, and the number of children a family has all affect the levels of economic development within the household for white American families. Even though education levels has a stronger affect toward higher levels of income, when the three variables are measured together, they are all highly statistically significant. In non-white American homes, education levels appears to be the key determinant of their economic status. Further test need to be measured in reference to how the number of children a family has and political participation affect the economic security of non-white American families. With this, the above hypotheses will prove to have more validity. However, in both cases it was important to measure education, the number of children a family has, and political participation together in order to understand the affect these variables have on each other, and how this affect leads to higher or lower levels of economic development within the family. These multivariate studies are also important in predicting the affect the independent variables will have on total family income in the future. It can be assumed that the highest year of school completed will continue to have a strong affect toward economic development in the future for both white and non-white American families. In addition, the number of children in a white American family and their political participation are significant variables to measure when determining their economic standpoint in future years to come. There are alternative approaches to identifying explanations to why non-white American families are less economically developed than white American families. One example is the difference in income between non-white and white American families who have single parents and ones that have two parents. Another alternative approach is identifying education as only an antecedent variable, and observing how it relates to occupation, the true independent variable under study. From here, one can observe how economic development is related to a person’s occupation within the home. As anyone who walks the streets of America’s largest cities knows, there has been a profound transformation of different ethnic cultures within the United States. The rapidity of the change has led to growing competition of economic development between white and non-white American families. This competition has lead to ethnic prejudice and discrimination as the United States continues to assimilate into the melting pot for the American dream. Political participation, education, and the number of children within the home are variables that allow the transition to become a less arduous process for white American families. However, if non-white American families continue to do poorly in terms of economic development because of these variables, non-whites will continue to lag behind the income scale in comparison to whites. Research along these lines will lead to the study of relative differences between ethnic cultures. An example is the discovery of why almost half the number of minorities return to their country of origin after experiences of economic injustice. Previous research may also benefit other analysis in the field of economics by itemizing fertility rates in terms of the higher number of non-white American families who lack the finances to properly nourish their children. These new variables along with my research can in time become valid determinants in explaining why white American families are economically better off that non-white American families.

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