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Homechevron_rightOpinionchevron_rightEditorialchevron_rightBridging the gap

Bridging the gap

Bridging the gap

Racism in America have been a major issue ever since the slave era where blacks are looked down as secondary citizens with zero rights and continues to be reflected in socio-economic inequality.

The effects of racism still prevail in employment, housing, education and government sectors. Despite growing and advancing in all walks of life, people still find it difficult to accept the presence of the blacks or the Afro-Americans in the US due to the racist prejudices. Despite Obama being the country’s first black President, there have been several incidents testifying the racist attitude of the people in recent years in the country and is more widespread nowadays. A recent incident in Ferguson town in Missouri, triggered violent protests resulting in hundreds of arrests and material destruction. Darren Wilson, a police officer fatally shot an 18 year old teen, Michael Brown, who he claimed tried to grab his gun. While Wilson said that he was doing his duty and shot the unarmed teen in self defense, witnesses claimed that it was cold blooded murder with Wilson shooting Brown 12 times. The grand jury did not indict Wilson sparking violent protests.

The ancestors of the Afro Americans were brought to America as slaves centuries ago. They were subjected to all kinds of brutal and inhuman treatments leaving a permanent scar on the psyche of the people and their descendants. Alex Haley in his much acclaimed novel, Roots, captures the lives of his ancestors who were sold into slavery in the US, tracing them back to their African village and finally to Haley. A classic, the novel is a two century drama that created a cultural sensation in the US. In 1863, US President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring free all the slaves in the territory. But the slave mentality persists among the Americans even today leading to incidents tainted with racist colours. The Afro-Americans in the US also face discrimination, are denied the rights and privileges entitled to the white citizens. The plight of the Afro-Americans is pathetic with the level of education and the rate of unemployment among the Black youths much lower when compared to the white Americans. The rate of child abuse and harassment are also higher than that of whites.

The scenario in India is not much different with the country in the ruthless clutches of discrimination, partiality and fascist attitude of the people in power against the minorities. The conviction that the members of a race are far more superior to the others often leads to discriminatory and abusive behavour and should be prevented. Only resolving the differences and bridging the gap between them would help maintain unity, harmony and peace among the people.

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