The book Outcast United by Warren St. John is about groups of refugee families that come to a small community in America from around the world to try and start a better life through employment, education and even sports. Throughout their journey in Clarkston, Georgia they had to over come many obstacles to fulfill the American Dream. From unpleasant encounters with the police, violent gangs, to the hardship on the soccer field, resettlement in Clarkston was not a easy thing to do, regardless of your age. With the negative encounters the Clarkston refugees have had to face, is resettlement really possible?
Chike Chime, a long time resident of Clarkston who was also a Nigerian immigrant, was one of the many townspeople that were affected by the racial profiling by police. In 2006 while Chime was heading to the pharmacy officer Timothy Jordan pulled him over; which confused Chime because he was unaware of why he was being pulled over. As Officer Jordan approached the window of the car Chime began to get his license from his wallet, which came off as a threat to Jordan. Without explaining why Chime was pulled over, Jordan preceded to drag Chime out of the car and bash him in the back of the head with the flashlight. When Chime tried to plead with the officer, Jordan sprayed him in the face with Cayenne oil. Later in the chapter it stated “Jordan assumed Chime was a recently arrived refugee” (St. John 83). Chime was clearly not a refugee, he had lived in Clarkston for nearly fifteen years. But because of his dark skin he fit the profile of a newly arrived refugee, he was segregated by his appearance not how he reacted to getting pulled over. “”They’re in America now, Jordan said of the immigrants and refugees. “Not Africa”(85). Jordan saying this just shows that him and the other police of Clarkston are treating them differently because they’re in America now.
Another issue that arose when the refugees started arriving was the out break of gangs. Many of the...
Cited: St.John, Warren. Outcast United. New York: Spiegel & Grau, 2009.
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