Middle Class Blacks' Burden

Topics: Black people, Race, African American Pages: 2 (747 words) Published: October 8, 1999
Middle Class Blacks' Burden

Today in America there are many who assume that racism does not exist as it did in the forties, fifties, and sixties. Racism today is not as dangerous as it once was, but that does not mean that it does not hurt people just as much. There are many who think we have solved our racial problems and that African Americans live freely. However, there are many African Americans who work extremely hard to benefit society and all some people still see is their skin color. Malcolm X once said, "If you're born in America with a black skin, you' re born in a prison." From reading Lenita McClain's "The Middle Class Black's Burden" and Shelby Steele's "On Being Black and Middle Class" the reader concludes that middle class blacks are judged unfairly by whites and other blacks through an examination of: 1)white people thinking blacks cannot do an adequate job, 2)lower class blacks who criticize middle and upper class blacks, and 3)victimization.

Racism today exists in many different forms. There are many people who, all their lives, were brought up to believe that black people are of a lesser standard. It is no wonder that many people think African Americans perform inadequately even though these African Americans produce a high quality satisfaction. The people that doubt the work of an African American can obviously be seeing only the skin color. Lenita McClain states, "I am burdened daily with showing whites that blacks are people." Shelby Steele asks, "After all, since when had white Americans taken note of anything but color when it came it blacks?" Our nation, which is supposed to preserve equal rights to everyone, is weakened when certain Americans feel they are judged on a day to day basis by their skin color. Some might argue that blacks and whites are equal, but it is obvious through these essays that this is not so.

If being stereotyped by some white people is not enough, many middle class blacks are ridiculed by...
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