In light of the recent situation in Ferguson and New York, there is a lot of focus on race, not just in terms of police, but in true equality. The media has been flooded with different statistics regarding the percentages of African Americans and Hispanics in prison, the percentages of arrests, and so on.
Let me preface this by saying that I donít doubt that there is still racism and hate in the United States. But I do question if the statistics are part of a cultural issue vs a race issue. For example, what percentage of gang members are black or Hispanic? What percentages grow up in single parent households? What percentages drop out of high school? I have looked up these exact numbers but I know they have been discussed.
But the more important thing is what do those factors have to do with the color of their skin? The color of oneís skin does not make someone more prone to violence, less inelegant, or less capable than anyone else. But for some reason, we as a society continue to label people based on the color of their skin. WHY?
Take President Obama for example. There is little doubt that he is a very intelligent guy. While I donít agree with is political decisions, I applaud his ambition and desire to make America a better country. I truly believe that he has good intentions, but is approaching things from the wrong direction. I donít give a rip about his color and I don't think the color of his skin has anything to do with his abilities. But I was appalled by the number of people who I personally know that voted for him because he was black. Does the color of his skin make him any better or worse as a President? No. But we continue to focus on it for some stupid reason. Yes, I am sure that there are people who didn't vote for him because of the color of his skin, and that makes them just as wrong as those who used that as a determining factor.
People are people and as I said before, anytime someone uses the color of oneís skin as a determining factor, I see that as racism.
What can we do as a society to work to establish true equality for all people, regardless of color, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic background, religion, or other label? What can we as a society do to change the cultures of those in impoverished, drug filled communitiesÖ not just black, but white, Hispanic, and every other race and background? What can we do as a society to start treating people as people, and just some irrelevant label?