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The history of the United States has a long road on the fight for equality. Specifically, the people in America have struggled with racial equality. From slavery, to post Civil War segregation, to the civil rights movements, the fight for racial equality has been constantly on the mind of the American government. Huge steps have been made to counter racial inequality in America. For example, the thirteenth, fourteenth, and fifteenth amendments all deal with giving equal rights to the slaves that were set free after the Civil War. People like Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks inspired the country to support the Civil Rights Movement in the sixties. Recently, the country elected, then re-elected, the first African-American president. Although the steps that have been taken have been incredibly significant, there is still work to be done in order to make a country that has true, full racial equality.
In 2012 a study was conducted about racial equality in the education system, and the results were shocking. The study found that although only eighteen percent of preschoolers were black, forty-eight percent of school suspensions for preschoolers were black children. Along with this, black students are three times more likely to be expelled than white students. Schools with predominantly black students are more likely to not offer the full range of math and science courses. These schools also have less experienced teachers and overall systems (Hsieh). According to this study, America is still experiencing racial inequality.
The results from this study are outrageous. These students are not given equal opportunities as white students and therefore have less options for their future. With a system that is so partial to one race, although there are not as many persecutions occurring, racial inequality has still not been achieved. This inequality that seems to occur naturally plagues the mind of society and creates stereotypes against certain races. For example, African-Americans are more associated with crime than white people. This stereotype can be seen in the statistic from Hsieh’s study that gives the high percentage of suspensions among African-American children. The fear is that with the development of this stereotype that black children will be unfairly accused because of their race. While the inequality in Hsieh’s study was not made intentionally, it needs to be corrected in order to avoid developing stereotypes that can potentially cause more problems for the country’s future.
Although the facts make racial inequality appear prevalent in schools, some people may argue the existence of racial inequality in America. They may argue that location is what is really causing the inequality, and more colored people just happen to be there. They also may argue that the weak school systems are due to low income and not race. However, the fact that bad locations are more likely to be home to colored people creates even more racial inequality in society. Also low income and race have been found to be directly correlated, showing that the poor school systems is another factor of racial inequality. While people may find other factors that attribute to the problem, most of these factors can be traced to racial inequality that has quietly pursued the nation after all these years.
While the government cannot intervene too much and still keep the virtue of freedom a part of the country, there are still things that can be done to lessen the racial inequality in America’s schools. For example, government could make all school systems required to have the same curriculum so that students would be able to go into life with equal odds. Government could also be more strict on ensuring that teachers have the proper knowledge and licensing. As well as regulating the school system more, government could just overall be more serious about racial inequality in America. This would include just letting things pass by without punishment, or letting the stereotypes created by racial inequality develop. Racial inequality can be avoided if the government is willing to put in a few regulations to make sure students are not discriminated against.
While government doing these things would lessen racial inequality, some may argue that it reduces freedom as well. Making school’s curriculums throughout the country the same may bring the value of education down and make competition increase leaving kids, who would otherwise succeed, in the dust. Also, regulating a teacher’s skills might make it harder for new teachers to get jobs, increasing the unemployment rate. Other dangers may arise with enforcing anti-discrimination laws. For example, people may be accused of racial discrimination although they were just doing what they thought was just, and the other person just happened to be colored. Enforcing anti-discrimination laws may decrease racial inequality for colored Americans, but possibly increase racial inequality for whites as well. These people argue that adding these regulations would actually cause more problems than they would fix.
Although these people have a valid stance, they are not correct. Systemizing school’s curriculums to be equal would overall give students a better chance to succeed. Currently, some students are not able to reach their full potential as their school has limited options. Regulating teachers would not increase employment, but instead would ensure that the teachers in schools are truly qualified for their jobs and our helping the children of America get on the path of success. To ensure that the anti-discrimination laws are fair, both sides would be listened to intently by a non-bias jury. To make the jury fair, it could be equal between the races with direct instructions to listen to the issue and not focus on the race. Hopefully with these regulations in America, racial inequality can cease to wreak havoc in society.
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