African Americans and Discrimination Originally from Sub-Sahara Africa, thousands of African Americans were kidnapped and brought over to and sold in the United States during the Atlantic Slavery Trade. By 1860, before the Civil War, 3.5 million African Americans lived as slaves, mostly in the Southern United States. More than 500,000 lived as free persons in 33 states across the United States (2008). Today, many African Americans believed to have come from European American or Native American heritage. They believe to be direct descendants of captive Africans who were enslaved. The original Africans were not given the chance to colonize or immigrate to the United States; they were hunted down and chained together like animals, stacked on top of each other on the bottom of the ship, and sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to a life they were not accustomed to- slavery. January 1863, Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation declaring freedom for African American slaves in slavery states. Following the signing of the bill, African Americans started facing even more problems with racial discrimination, segregation, racism, and prejudice. African Americans were beaten, put in jail, put to death, and denied basic human rights. To say African Americans were racially discriminated against only because of the color of their skin is an understatement. They were also racially discriminated against because of their sex, their religion, and their social class. During the last decade of the 19th century, racial violence and racial discrimination dramatically increased against African Americans. African Americans were not allowed to anything white people considered to be for “whites only”. They could not join any “white” organizations,...
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