Xinhua news agency, Beijing, January 28 (international observation) – social inequality in the United States from the heated discussion of “white privilege”
Williams, a white American woman, was arrested for stealing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s laptop and trying to sell it during the US Congress riots earlier this month, but she has been released on bail. About 10 years ago, 16-year-old African American kalif Browder was charged with stealing a backpack and held in custody for three years without trial.
“In the United States, there are two judicial systems.” Many people on social media ridicule the deep-rooted phenomenon of “white privilege” in the United States. When skin color becomes a key factor, it largely determines whether a person gets a smiling face or a cold reception, how much social resources he gets, and even what kind of life he has, it’s hard to be fair in American society.
The injury of “color”
The “double standard” law enforcement of the police in the Congressional riots and the “tolerance” of the court towards the white people involved in the incident made the word “white privilege” become the key word of the American media and public opinion once again, causing a new round of public anger and criticism.
There are many groups of comparative photos circulating on American social networks recently: last summer, many African Americans were brutally treated by the police in the anti racial discrimination protest; but in the Congressional riot, the police were calm to the white protestors who broke in, and even took photos together. “That’s a big mistake!” Don Winslow, a famous American writer, sighs.
Ron Harris, a member of the Democratic National Committee of the United States, commented that law enforcers in the United States have their own “judgment”: people of color who protest against social injustice are “criminals”, while white people who attack Congress are only “protestors”.
COVID-19, which has been devastated by the United States, has also highlighted inequality among different skin colors. Minorities, such as African Americans, have suffered more than whites. Susan Rice, the new director of the White House domestic policy committee, recently admitted that non white people are more likely to be infected with and die of the new coronavirus than white people. African American and Hispanic families with children are twice as likely to experience food shortages in the epidemic as white families. U.S. Department of labor data show that since the outbreak of the epidemic, the unemployment rate of African American adults is much higher than that of whites.
CNN recently published an article saying that when the toxic “white privilege” is not restricted, or even encouraged by politicians and dignitaries, the result is what the United States is now like, “structural racial discrimination has become an abscess in the United States.”.
The phenomenon of “white privilege” is rooted in the history of more than 200 years since the founding of the United States and even the longer history since the European colonists entered the North American continent. In essence, it is a manifestation of systemic racism. Although the United States has given ethnic minorities equal rights at the legal level under the long-term struggle, the actual racial inequality has penetrated into every corner of society, especially in the allocation of resources such as education, employment and medical care.
The Washington Post recently quoted a report released by three economists as saying that in the past half century, the income gap between white and African American families has been huge and there is no sign of narrowing. According to the report, in 2016, the total assets of 11.5 African American families were barely equal to that of an ordinary white family, while a white family with a high school degree earned almost 10 times as much wealth as an ordinary African American family.
American educator Paul tuhe wrote that African Americans account for about 15% of high school graduates in the United States every year, while only 8% of Ivy League freshmen from Princeton University, Cornell University and other famous American universities. Another data shows that only one-third of African Americans graduate from college, half of white people. Compared with white students, African American students have more tuition loans and worse financial situation, which is the main reason for them to drop out of school.
The New York Times recently published an open letter to “Dear white American theater” written by several writers, directors and other artists of color, revealing how white dominated cultural institutions systematically ignored or even suppressed artists of color. “We’ve been watching how you pretend you didn’t see us,” it said
Rice also pointed out that for too many American families, the systematic racial discrimination and inequality in the American economy, law and system make the so-called “American Dream” out of reach.
Chronic disease is hard to get rid of
How to reverse the phenomenon of “white privilege” and realize racial equality is a long-term question of Americans. New US President Biden signed four executive orders on the 26th to promote racial equality in the United States. Analysts pointed out that the president’s signing of an executive order on racial issues shows the seriousness of racial discrimination in the United States, but such measures may be difficult to solve the deep-rooted systemic racial discrimination in the United States.
American sociologist Peggy mackintosh believes that in western society, white people generally enjoy a series of special advantages, which are “inherent hidden interests”. People with privileges may not realize it and are more reluctant to admit it.
Roxanne Jones, an American journalist, said that systematic racial discrimination is widespread in the United States. White people are “more valuable” than African Americans, which is a “culture”. Every corner of American society tries to legalize this “culture”.
Selges Joyo kamga, an expert at the Thabo Mbeki Institute of African leadership at the University of South Africa, pointed out that there is an ideology of “color coding, black and white” in the United States, which is covered by formal equality in American law, making the United States face multiple difficulties and challenges in solving the problems of racism and racial discrimination. (reporter: Sun Ding)