Black Lives Matter: Racism In The United States

654 Words3 Pages
The “Black Lives Matter” the movement has repetitively made headlines throughout United States’ media outlets ever since the fatal shooting of African-American teen, Trayvon Martin. Since then, an abundance of police brutality cases has been brought to the attention of the public, such as the deaths of Michael Brown, Philando Castile, and Sandra Bland, which have all sparked outrage and protests across the country. Racism has been a matter high tension remained hidden beneath the surface among American citizens since colonial times. Today, discrimination against African-Americans in many aspects of life, such as the criminal justice system, the work force, and in social settings sprouts itself as one of the leading social issues of the United…show more content…
Founding father, Thomas Jefferson, writes in his book, “Notes on the State of Virginia,” that blacks “are inferior to the whites in the endowments both of body and mind” (qtd in Kendi). This ideology was not unpopular at the time, and remained that way, hence the laws that formed a rift between whites and those of color, even after slavery was abolished. For example, the Fifteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution mentions, “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude” (Amendment XV, Section 1). Therefore, having this amendment ratified not only allowed blacks the right to vote, but also exposes the fact that blacks were still viewed as the inferior race, taking about five years after the abolishment of slavery, with the Thirteenth Amendment, to finally be permitted to vote during elections. The oppression of African Americans further progressed with the passing of the Jim Crow Laws, after the American Civil War. Jim Crow Laws separated colored people from whites in practically all aspects of life. Black and white children were prohibited from attending the same schools, blacks were separated from whites when it came to public transportation, and poll tax literacy tests were applied to black voters were a few policies put into effect to deny African Americans their basic human rights (Jim Crow Laws). “The implementation of Jim Crow—or racial segregation laws—institutionalized white supremacy and black inferiority throughout the South” (Brown). As a result, these laws, as well as slavery gave white supremacists approval of their beliefs, and is a reason their ideology continued to transcend throughout American history to modern
Open Document