Friday, September 15, 2006

What’s wrong with being Black?

Today I was called a N……,
I wondered what that word really meant,
For it was a word that really hurt me
And which made me feel ashamed,

I ran to my mother
Hoping to find the answer,
With tears filling her eyes
She told me what I did not want to hear,

The color of your dark brown skin
Which was one of the many gifts God gave you
As he gave you life,
Is their reason for calling you my dear,
The racist word “Nigger”.

It’s one thing having racist remarks thrown at you when you’re an adult just for being black, but when you’re a child, those words hurt and leaves a deep wound, which usually takes a long time to heal.

I wonder how many kids out there can relate to the poem I wrote above. My guess is quite a few.

I came across an article by Mr. Justice Marshall that I thought of sharing with you. Footnotes have been deleted. Here it is:

“Three hundred and fifty years ago, the Negro was dragged to this country in chains to be sold into slavery. Uprooted from his homeland and thrust into bondage for forced labor, the slave was deprived of all legal rights. It was unlawful to teach him to read: he could be sold away from his family and friends at the whim of his master; and killing him or maiming him was not a crime. The system of slavery brutalized and dehumanized both master and slave………..

The position of the Negro today in America is the tragic but inevitable consequence of centuries of unequal treatment, meaningful equality remains a distant dream for the Negro.

A Negro child today has a life expectancy, which is shorter by more than five years than that of a white child. The Negro child’s mother is over three times more likely to die of complications in childbirth, and the infant mortality rate for Negroes is nearly twice that for whites. The median income of the Negro family is only 60% that of the median of a white family, and the percentage of Negroes who live in families with incomes below the poverty line is nearly four times greater than that of whites.

When the Negro child reaches working age, he finds that America offers him significantly less than it offers his white counterpart. For Negro adults, the unemployment rate is twice that of whites, and the unemployment rate for Negro teenagers is nearly three times that of white teenagers. A Negro male who completes four years of college can expect a median annual income of merely $110 more than a white male who has only a high school diploma. Although Negroes represent 11.5% of the population, they are only 1.2 % of the lawyers and judges, 2% of the physicians, 2.3% of the dentists, 1.1% of the engineers and 2.6% of the college and university professors.

The relationship between those figures and the history of unequal treatment afforded to the Negro cannot be denied. At every point from birth to death the impact of the past is reflected in the still disfavored position of the Negro.

In light of the sorry history of discrimination and its devastating impact on the lives of the Negroes, bringing the Negro into the mainstream of American life should be a state interest of the highest order. To fail to do so is to ensure that America will forever remain a divided society.”



Blogger Haren said...

I found out, that racism has to be experienced to be fully understood. I also experienced that a majority of those who are ‘victims’ of racism “are” or “end up being” even more racist (not necessarily as a result of their experience).

8:46 AM  

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