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Race Relations in the USA

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Introduction

Race Relations in the USA The foundations of present day USA were laid way back in the fifteenth century, when colonisation of the Americas took place and settlements began to take shape. People were quickly broken up into five groups within a hierarchy system, which consisted of the Native Americans, White Americans, African Americans, Hispanic Americans and the Asian Americans. The year was 1492 Christopher Columbus had 'discovered' North America, previous to this no one in Europe had any knowledge of the Americas. Most people thought the earth was flat but Christopher did not believe this, and it was on his quest to disprove the myth that he landed in North America. He was actually intending to sail across the Atlantic and land in India, where he was to purchase some spices. When he first landed in North America he initially thought he was in India but as the people were darker than he expected he called them 'Red Indians' and thought further inland he would find the Indians and spices he had set out for. The Spanish conquered and colonised most of South America, the British took the Caribbean and North America and the French took hold of Canada. The 1500s were spent exploring the continent. The 1600s were then spent dividing it up, initially the British formed 13 states along the east coast of North America. ...read more.

Middle

Early nineteenth century northern states one by one abolished slavery on the grounds that it was immortal, and un-Christian. The south didn't want to abolish slavery because it would damage their profitability and could hold potential hostility against the plantation owners. The reality scared the whites in the south because it was 90% blacks, especially in South Carolina and Mississippi. Those in the north never needed the help of slaves because their climate was different from the south, the crops they grew were like those in UK wheat, vegetables and the grazing of cows these were not very labour intensive so they did it themselves and looked down on the southerners exploiting the African slaves. Also the north was more industrialised whereas in the south they were more agriculturally inclined. The war was also over the issue of politics, those in the south wanted to include the blacks in their population total to gain seats, to be able to dominate the government's decisions. Of course the north disagreed and in turn wanted the southerners to pay taxes, as a way to continue using the blacks immorally for their own benefits. To settle this dispute they ended up comprising by allowing the south to include blacks in their population total at a ratio of 5 blacks to 3 whites. The very few natives were not included at all and were seen as 'foreign nations'. ...read more.

Conclusion

Those being ill treated for example the Jews feel no problem when abusing blacks because they are even lower than them in importance. So it's just a vicious circle where everyone is in constant conflict. The US hierarchy does not simply state that the people placed in each group cannot succeed but just shows that they have to try harder than those higher to succeed. In the past a Jewish person may not have been allowed the right to go to university, whereas more recently in history it could just be that they might have to play down their religious beliefs or change their name to access the facilities of the region. Even in present day America many states are still very racist and treat non-white people as outsiders. Even white people in the cities have decided to move out, as a result of an increase in the Black and Hispanic population within the cities. Assimilation is a key factor to progression within the USA, meaning people have to become part of the American 'melting pot', in which nationalities and racial groups fuse into one. Settlement in the USA was beneficial for some and not for others, because of the divisions of racial groups it has made it hard for some groups to live in peace and harmony. The institutional racism of the USA even at present makes life unstable and hard for many but I am optimistic that the future holds the key to equality for all citizens. 16/09/2003 HISTORY By Rasmali ...read more.

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