The concept of segregation starts from the thesis that African Americans are of a lesser value than white people and therefore one race needs to be separated from the other. Ensuring these two don’t mix, affected every aspect of their lives, from the use of public facilities to the more private parts of their lives.
Looking from a social-economic perspective, segregation has been assuring that companies, farms and basically, every other form of economic organization, maintained their cheap working force, as well as the continuity in the occupation of low income-great physical effort jobs. After lots of struggles, things have moved on forward, but reminiscences of this form that discrimination takes, keep on living until this day.
Segregation from the past
There are quite a number of research papers that consider the beginning of segregation history as an ironic effect of the Civil War. The moment the African Americans were no longer slaves, the society in America no longer possessed any control over them. Questions began arising about a possible new redistribution of power and wealth, seeing the new established ways. Continuing the discrimination under the form of racial segregation seemed to be the immediate right response to this threat.Order now
Riding separate public transportation, being forbidden to stand on a seat, refusal to serve black people in hotels or restaurants, separate education by not allowing their children in schools, separate hospital facilities, different seats in the few theaters that allowed them even separate burial sites. All these were the way segregation managed to keep African Americans in check, reminding them all the while of their assigned place in society.
Proof that the segregation made sense not only economically, but also politically is that it was all backed by Supreme Court decisions. It stated, at first, that African Americans were not US citizens and therefore were not allowed the same rights. 50 years later the same Supreme Court implied that if a race is inferior, the Constitution cannot make it equal to a superior one. All these repeated rulings helped to create a legal frame for segregation.
Of course, that the measures taken in the South were worse than in other states, on account of the history, the states had with African American citizens. But, although the bad things that came out of segregation cannot be denied, it also spurred some good. For example, the African American community became much more united, they started developing their own businesses, own schools, own health-related issues aids and a general sense of always helping one another.
Segregation was meant to underline their inequality, to make them forget any common roots they had and to keep them submissive as the unqualified working force the company owners needed them to be. A turn of events happened only a decade after the Second World War. Through the Civil Rights Movement, African Americans managed to gain a racial sense of self-worth, which was the exact trait that white people tried to eradicate using the segregation tactic, out of fear and out of the need to control.
Segregation – nowadays
The decade-long efforts to balance the civil rights were not focused on the integration of African American people into the white society, as derived from a desire to be like them. It was more of a means to an end. They sought political power, in order to ensure the same standards of education, resulting in better-paid jobs, better housing opportunities, appropriate healthcare and equal treatment from law enforcement agents.
Having elected Obama as president might not make the discussion about segregation as one of the hot topics. By now, the legal outline has changed in disallowing all forms of discrimination, including segregation. However, it’s a way that is long engraved in the very nature of the American people. Only by continuously discussing it a change in the way people think might take place, not only by forcing it through laws. Argumentative essays that college students are tasked to write now become even more important in acknowledging the existence and effects of this form of discrimination. Although there aren’t as many titles in the papers about this subject, it still is a part of the day to day life in America.
A close look at the real estate market in St. Louis is a great example of how segregation works still in the real estate market. African Americans are guided to estates in certain regions, mainly in what now seem to be dominant African American neighborhoods, apart from the mainly white people neighborhoods.
The same can be experienced in schools today. Segregation is happening in some Universities around the country as well. There are fraternities that won’t accept members based only on their race. This is the unwanted kind. Then we see a voluntary sort of segregation, where the amount of students that attend same race schools has increased. Some look at it as a bad sign, while repeating their ancestor’s mistakes of seeing things from a racial perspective. Others interpret the statistics through the point of view of the change in the country’s demographic.
While segregation has a long history within the US nation, major breakthroughs have been made regarding the subject. Now, it might seem like a distant past story, but there are still effects that take place even today. And even if a voluntarily kind of segregation takes place, we need to be alert as not to repeat the mistakes made in the time of the enforced one.