The Tables of Discrimination

Essay: Are blacks still experiencing discrimination in the area of jobs, education, and legal rights? Demonstrate the validity of your position by using facts from periodicals, newspapers, and statistical information comparing whites and blacks in the United States.

Discrimination is still practiced in the United States against black Americans, but in some areas of American society, the tables of discrimination have turned to favor the black people over the formerly powerful white Americans. Facts and statistics support this statement thoroughly even though this topic is quite controversial.

An area of discrimination is employment. Before discussing employment, unemployment is a major factor to consider. In 1987, the unemployment rate of blacks was 13 percent. This is more than twice the rate of white Americans, which had a 6 percent unemployment rate. (LeRoy Barnes pp. 34 - 35) It can not be proven however, that blacks were discriminated against because they are required under law to be given equal opportunities as compared to whites in the job market. According to the Principles of United States Democracy as stated in the Maryland test of citizenship skills packet, principle three is "Equality under the law is promised for all citizens." On the other hand in administrative support positions, 2 percent more blacks were employed in 1992 than whites. (1993 almanac) Also in the area of investigation, 2.6 percent more blacks were employed in 1986 than whites. (LeRoy Barnes pp.34 - 35) On the contrary, in professional specialties, 11 percent more whites were employed in 1992 than blacks. Also, 5 percent more white executives were employed than blacks in 1992. (1993 almanac) As shown, blacks and whites were both supposedly "discriminated" against in the area of jobs.

Discriminatory acts are also found in the field of education toward both blacks and whites. One way to prove that blacks could be discriminated against is the fact that 4 percent more 18 and 19 year old white students were enrolled in colleges in 1991 than blacks. But the opposite situation is posed with 30 - 34 year old black students which override the white students enrollment by a 0.5 percent margin. Total in 1991, 2.5 percent more blacks were enrolled in any school level than whites. (1993 almanac) Relating to college, The Miss Collegiate African American Pageant accepts applicants from only historically black colleges as stated several times during the telecast. On the other hand, in 1970, the televised annual Miss America Pageant was forced to adapt their rules to include black women in the contest. The first black contestant was Sheryl Brown, in 1970, who was Miss Iowa. The real breakthrough was in 1984, when Vanessa Williams, the now famous singer, won the title of Miss America. The Miss America Pageant is related to education due to the fact that scholarships are awarded. (Miss America And Beyond)

The third major section that needs to be discussed is blacks and whites as far as discrimination with legal rights. A prime example of this situation is the Bakke case. Basically, the Bakke case was about a white man, Allen Bakke, who had higher grades and test scores than those who were admitted into the University of California under a special program for members of a minority group. Bakke had been refused admission in 1973 and 1974. The Supreme Court's final decision was that schools could use race as one factor of college admissions to schools that receive Federal funding. Colleges are not required to reach a certain quota of students belonging to minority groups, but they must include some amount of students of a minority group. (1988 World Book Encyclopedia) Let's say hypothetically, John White, of the white race and John Black, of the black race, both apply to a college. Then when both of their applications are reviewed, there happens to be only one spot left to fill that year. Then assume that John White's grades are higher than John Black's, the college admissions board can choose John Black over John White on the grounds of race. This is legal according to the decision of the Bakke case. Certainly, whites are being discriminated against in this part of the decision of the Bakke case, even though the Supreme Court's decision is Constitutional.

Discrimination is practiced in the United States against blacks as well as whites. In fact, discrimination is practiced equally against whites if not more so in this modern day, than against blacks, as proven.

Amanda O.
Alicia W.

1993 Information Please, Almanac; pp.56, 58, & 861
1988 World Book Encyclopedia; pp.33
1989 Social Problems (vol. 20) LeRoy Barnes;pp. 34 - 35
Video Recording of 1994 Miss America and Beyond
Video Recording of 1994 Miss Collegiate African American Pageant

To The Civil Rights Essay Index
To The Civil Rights Project Page
To US Government Lessons Plans

George Cassutto's
  Cyberlearning World

     [Lesson Plan of the Day]     [Cassutto Memorial]    [About the Author]    [Search]    [Civics Lesson Plans]