Institutional Racism

Topics: Racism, Race and Ethnicity, United States Pages: 3 (829 words) Published: April 2, 2011
For the past centuries, racism has greatly influenced wars, slavery, the formation of nations, and legal codes. Racism is the belief that one racial group are superior to another. Racism is an absolute ideology, because a person fixed beliefs on a certain race gives that person a sense of superiority of another race. For example, all colored people are for all time inferior to the white population in mental capacity. This attitude always causes, therefore, a hierarchy of the society. “The first clear evidence of racism occurred at the end of the 16th century with the start of the slave trade from Africa to Britain and to America.”(Steven) The origin of racism occurs when Columbus discovered America. When slavery was practiced in the United States, blacks were not only considered inferior to whites but regarded as property instead of human beings. During the 1787 Philadelphia Convention, it was agreed that slaves were to be considered three-fifths people for purposes of taxation and representation. Generally during slavery, blacks were deemed intellectually inferior to whites. This notion persists in modern-day America. “People are not born being racist just as they are not born knowing right from wrong. Racism is said to be something that is learned, according to Murray from the American Psychological Association.” (“What causes racism?”). One of the most common causes of racism is stereotypes. People make assumptions on others based upon what they may see and hear though television, radio, internet, music, and experiences. “… when a source is constantly displaying negative things about a particular race, then that will affect the overall opinions as well.”(Alpha). Ignorance will always keep racism thriving, especially among those who have no desire to act differently. The lack of understanding and false perceptions about others which amounts to a lack of knowledge creates the idea of one’s race being better than the other race. Some of the very common...
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