For example, later in his piece Staples recounts the period in his life where he worked in Chicago as a journalist. He vividly describes how he had come into work one day in a bit of a hurry due to a looming deadline. However, it turns out he has been mistaken for a burglar and was pursued by security. With no way to identify himself, Staples has to only hope to get to his editor’s office before he is caught, otherwise he wouldn’t have someone to vouch for his innocence (Staples 543). Due to society’s past history, one can be fairly certain that if a white man had acted in the same way, people would pay little to no attention to him.
Staples claims that at the time, “there seemed to be a discreet, uninflammatory distance” between the two of them. Staples quickly became aware that she did not feel the same way; she repeatedly looked back at Staples with a worried glance. Staples suggests that in her opinion, the tall, black man walking behind her was too close for comfort. Staples claims that the woman picked up her pace and that “within seconds she
He is living in that era where all black people are treated as violent, disrespectful and harmful. Staples explains that the woman's quick getaway when she saw him on a street at night following him, made him feel like "an accomplice in tyranny" that was "indistinguishable from the muggers." Although he said a person who doesn't even know how to use a knife how can he harm anyone? How he is thrown out of his own office just because guard assumes him as a burglar. He later explains how he portraits himself less threatening by taking measure precautions like the whistles around the people just to show positive ethos and to make people comfortable around
One of the worse roots being stereotypes. Stereotypes have the power to label someone and rob them of all their hard work or strike fear into others. One such stereotype is that of black men being more dangerous;yet, one black writer voices his opinion on such a stereotype. In the essay “Just Walk On By” by Brent Staples, Staples describes his experience of being a large black man and how it affects the people around him. From people locking their doors to pedestrians crossing the street to avoid a confrontation, people seem to be afraid of Staples just from a glance.
In “Black Men and Public Space” by Brent Staples shows how being a young black man has affected him. He is perceived as dangerous right away as he arrives in Chicago. This is known as stereotyping. Stereotyping is a fixed idea or image made of a person. Putting a label on someone is something done everyday.
A wise man named Martin Luther King Jr. once said, “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.” In other words, the color of a person’s skin should not be judged on how we treat each other. The color of a person’s skin should not be a bother in public. However, there has been many histories where the blacks were treated unnormal because of their skin color. Brent Staples strongly proved something mystical about the world on how many people react to black people in public spaces. He proved it by using ethos, pathos, and logos on his essay he wrote called, “Black Men and Public Space.” Staples who is six feet two inches with a beard approached that several people, especially women, sees him as a mugger, a rapist, or worse.
One example that is effective in aiding the readers to understand Staples point of view of the world; would have to be when Staple hears the “thunk, thunk, thunk of the driver… hammering down the door locks” (Staples 28). This helps the readers understand that even when Staples crosses the street in front of cars, it causes people to become afraid for their safety and lock their doors. Even if Staples doesn’t make a threatening gesture to them, people still feared for their safety. Therefore, Staples has to be careful with how he acts around people, or they might think he is trying to harm them in some way, shape, or form.
He is eye-balled everywhere he goes by white people, denied voting rights, and couldn’t even cash a check without any hassle from employees. In a conversation between Griffin and his new peers about equal job opportunities one man says “Many sincerely think the Negro, because of his very Negroness, could not possibly measure up to white standards in work performance. I read recently where one of them said that equality of education and job opportunity would be an even greater tragedy for us. He said it would quickly prove to us that we can’t measure up—disillusion us by showing us that we are , in fact, inferior” (Griffin 40). This quote reinforces the idea that white people try to engrain the belief that black people should not and cannot ever be equal to “the man” in society and they use racist propaganda to do
Gans (2005) and Wacquant (2001) argued that the relationship between socio-economic status and race derives from unique historical and cultural conditions (Spencer,2014:54). A black woman faces much more marginalisation than a black man which Emecheta expressed in her book. The notion of double marginalisation of black women take place in two ways. At first, female gender remains a source of stigma in Africa. They occupy the lowest rank in their society.
Just as Staples said, “Its was in the echo of that terrified woman’s footfalls that I first began to know the the unwieldy inheritance I’d come to into -- the ability to alter public space in ugly way.” (239). It soon dawn upon me that although I may not know them, I had made a firm decision to avoid walking past them because I had judge them based on their race and appearances. Similarly to the woman that ran away from Staples because he was a tall black African male and the women had felt his presences to be threatening. In recent histories, the majority of African American are generally involved in gangs and crime, which is another common reason why numerous black African are being stereotype and misunderstanding in case similar to Staples. “Such episode are uncommon.