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Esteban Loza

RWS 1302

Is Racism Still Alive today in America?


Racism has been prevalent in civilization for millenniums. In the U.S, racism was

commonly accepted before the civil rights movement. Or so it is thought. Is racism alive today in

America? That is the big question that many people, do not bother to ask.. There are many

examples of modern racism in mainstream society, but is racism socially accepted? The answer

to this question is no, but racism is still dangerously rampant, with the Ku Klux Kan running

more rampant than ever and President Trump targeting Muslim Countries as a whole, many

would beg to differ. Gerrymandering, stereotyping and racial slurs seem to be the way that

racism is alive today in society. The most worrisome case of these racist acts, are police brutality

and ethnic stereotyping. From these modern racist situations, arise things like Black Lives Matter

and other similar factions. It is activists like so, and a society as a whole that will make a

difference in present society, alike the civil rights movement, because one thing is sure-racism is

still alive and not going away..

Racism in America: A Review of Literature

Esteban Loza
RWS 1302

Racism. A simple concept, but a complex issue. The Merriam-Webster dictionary lists

the definition as follows prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a

different race based on the belief that one's own race is superior. Many people believe that

racism is towards the group minority, but actually it is more likely to happen to the majority as

well. It could happen to any race or any ethnic group. To extremities of ethnic cleansing know as

genocide, similar to Nazi Germany's extreme racism towards Jews, or little racists acts like

chanting racists slurs that are portrayed in mainstream society through rap or movies.. Racism is

something that every single person will experience or witness in their lifetimes. A young toddler

or a baby will not understand what racism is. Racism is a concept that is thought and learned

Racism is involved in our everyday life, the question is how do we improve it. The answer would

be too broad to break down in a paper, but many experts would agree that education is the key.

Education on what is racism and how to avoid it. Oddly enough people do not believe in racism,

and if they do they believe it ended a long time ago when slaves were freed by the 13th

Amendment. Others believe that racism is not prevalent and it hardly exists since the Civil

Rights Movement in the50s and 60s.. The reality is that racism is still alive as it has been in

American Society since the founding of the colonies. Racism is alive not only for African

Americans but, Asians, Hispanics, and especially Natives! The eyes of history have disregarded

these small, but usual cases of segregation.The overall purpose of this literature review, is to

prove that racism is alive by, showing statistics and examples of racism in modern society,

comparing racism now to before the Civil Rights era, and finally determining just how prevalent

racism is today in America.

Is Racism alive in America, and is it common in modern society?

Esteban Loza
RWS 1302

Racism is a common concept in the United States. It is and has been a common concept

in the past of the whole world. But how does the U.S compare to another country per say South

Africa? According to the Fair Observer and South African poet and writer Don Mattera explains

succinctly how a nation can take collective responsibility in righting the wrongs of its past:

Sorry is not just a word its a deed, an act. ( Fair Observer, Christopher Penler) According

to the article, instead of the U.S fixing the mistakes of before the civil rights era, The U.S had

other issues arise. The worse of them was the -lynching periods of the 1930s, and the way

African-Americans were also subjected to persecution and segregation by Jim Crow laws until

1965 was horrendous. In the post-civil rights era, racial tensions are high strung from the War

on Drugs and police brutality against African-Americans. The period since 1980 has seen a

staggering increase in incarceration. (Fair Observer, Christopher Penler) If racism is already

deemed as alive, then how prevalent is it compared directly to pre- civil rights era.

How does racism now compare to before the Civil Rights Movement?

However that is not the only way that racism has stayed alive post-civil rights era. In a

study by the Huffington Post, the writer compares racism now to before the Civil Rights

movement, and asks one question, is racism still alive in America? Well to figure this out there

are a couple of facts and a graph that will help the reader better understand the inequalities

between Whites and Blacks in America. The following are three facts that will make any person

truly question if they believe that racism is no more in America. The war on drugs has been

waged primarily in communities of color, where people of color are more likely to be charged

with more serious offenses and ordered to serve longer sentences.

Students of color face harsher punishments in school than their white peers.
While people of color make up about 30 percent of the United States population, they
account for 60 percent of those imprisoned.
Esteban Loza
RWS 1302

42 percent of Black children are educated in all high-poverty schools (both elementary
and secondary), while only 6 percent of White children are educated in high-poverty
schools. (Huffington Post, Eric Cooper)
These common facts will surprise the majority of people. Common everyday injustices like the
fact that kids of color are more likely to get in trouble at school or face harsher punishments for
the same infringement than their white peers. According to Huffington post, Black children
represent 18 percent of preschool enrollment, but 42 percent of the preschool children suspended
once, and 48 percent of the preschool children suspended more than once, a Department

Education report, released in March, noted .

Figure 1 : Shows preschoolers facing suspensions based on race and ethnicity

This is an injustice and racist act that can be common in our school systems. Perhaps something
small right now but it could develop into a deeper issue later in life. An issue like the one that
America faces on incarceration.How does it make statistical sense, that people of color only
make up 30% of the population of the United States, but on the other hand they make up 60%
percent of the population in prison. These statistics make the issue of race an obvious one. This
Esteban Loza
RWS 1302

issue could be due to smaller racist problems that arise early during education. For example, 42%
of Black Children in the United States are educated in a high poverty school and White Children
would only account for 6% of students educated in high poverty schools. These small factors
could influence bigger issues like incarceration and police brutality. But just how prevalent is
racism today? How prevalent is Racism in America Today?

We have already broken down if racism is alive, and how it is compared to before the
civil rights, but just how prevalent is it today? This is a tough question, as it can be proven and
shown present in many ways. Some inequalities today include the great wage gap between
people of color and those that are white, but also more important things like the amount of
people facing police brutality and ultimately killed The gap for both of these factors is huge.
Between 2007 and 2010,black families by 31 percent, compared to 11 percent for white
families. That is great gap in wealth. Figure 2 shows the gap in wealth between both races.

Just like there is a gap of wealth between Blacks and Whites, there is also a difference of how
many people get into police brutality and get killed between both races. Issues like this make it
clear that we are not done as a society implementing true equality. Even Though the situation is
not as bad as during the Civil Rights, racism is still alive and prevalent today.

Esteban Loza
RWS 1302

Some people in America are in denial that racism is still alive and well. Not only does racism
seem to be factually alive, but it can be compared to before the Civil Rights movement. Racism
can also be studied to understand in which ways is it present in modern society, and what are
some examples of how it is alive and prevalent in America today. Analysing modern examples of
racism like : statistics of segregation in schools and education, gaps in wealth, and finally
differences in important issues like incarceration percentages and amount of people killed by
police brutality by race. Modern Activism like Black Lives Matter Arise from these certain
issues. The first step to fixing these problems is to recognize that they are there and seek a
reasonable solution. Acting like racism is not alive anymore , or like it died during the civil
rights, is the wrong attitude, instead is better to understand how its is prevalent today in modern
society with charts, facts, and statistics.


1. Cooper, E. (2016, July 01). Is Racism Still Alive In America? That's Affirmative.
Retrieved October 30, 2017, from https://www.huffingtonpost.com/eric-cooper/is-racism-
2. N. (2016, April 07). Racism in America Today Is Alive and Well - And These Stats
Prove It. Retrieved October 30, 2017, from https://mic.com/articles/140107/racism-in-
Esteban Loza
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3. Shoichet, C. E. (2015, November 25). Racism is a 'big problem' to more Americans, poll
finds. Retrieved October 30, 2017, from http://www.cnn.com/2015/11/24/us/racism-
4. Sears, D. O., Sidanius, J., & Bobo, L. (2000). Racialized politics: the debate about
racism in America. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
5. KatalyticReaction, F. T. (n.d.). Racism in America Today. Retrieved October 30, 2017,
from http://www.teenink.com/opinion/social_issues_civics/article/814349/Racism-in-
6. Lopez, G. (2017, September 18). Study: anti-black hiring discrimination is as prevalent
today as it was in 1989. Retrieved October 30, 2017, from
7. Goyette, B., & Scheller, A. (2014, July 02). 15 Charts That Prove We're Far From Post-
Racial. Retrieved November 03, 2017, from