How Are People Of Colour Effected By America 's History Of Racism?

1096 Words Mar 7th, 2016 null Page
How are people of colour effected by America’s history of racism?

Like the history of many countries settled by white colonists, racial injustice plays a pivotal role in America’s past. Since the original theft of land from the American Indians to African enslavement, prejudice on the grounds of race has been prevalent in its society. The dehumanisation and abuse suffered by people of colour has been described as a “racist virus in the American blood stream” (Moynihan,1965), a virus which is yet to die out. Its legacy continues in present day racism, both casual and institutional, reflected by incidents of police brutality and the disproportionate rate of arrest and incarceration of people of colour. Although conditions/laws in America have improved, there is still a long way to go before racial equality is achieved.

With the arrival of Columbus in the late 15th century, the first white emigrants began to settle in America. Thus began a complex history of oppression and segregation on the grounds of race. The native American Indians were forced to give up their land, and their lives in many cases, as well as their religious beliefs as the Spanish Inquisition enforced conversion to Christianity. They were subjected to slavery, a “most horrible servitude and captivity” (Las Casas, 1561). Despite the mistreatment of native Americans, there was a commonly held belief that their lives were actually being improved under the European settler’s control. This ideology relied on…

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