Friday, March 15, 2013

How are the 60s still an influence when it comes to minorities? (pick one minority)

I wrote this paper for my history class that is about the 60s.

Ongoing social and economic “progress” of “minorities”

 Part 1, How are the 60s still an influence when it comes to minorities? (pick one minority)

First off this question is flawed. Take a look at our census from 2011 pictured above . There still persists this misconception and idea around the issue of minority. According to this there are basically only WHITE people and BLACK people. If you do the math 78.1 % White people, 13.1 % Black people. That is 91.2% of our population with a few other specific ethnicities called out. I do think there is a bigger issue that is a problem here. Hispanic is a category not even related to the fact of whether you are White or Black. And where are the Irish, Italians, Russians, Middle Easterners, and Latinos etc and how can we still be so stuck on color of skin? Why is there even this lump of white people and really what is white anyway? We always hear all this harping about illegal immigrants in our country. Evidently they are mostly white but I don’t think all the racists in Arizona would say that. The USA is and always has been the great melting pot of the world. You say pick one minority but that is very difficult for me to do because the whole idea of what is a minority is difficult to describe. Sometimes people try to say women are a minority but they are 50% of the population and that is not a minority is it? How are the 60’s still influencing minorities? I think the people in the 60’s who used to fight for free love, the idea to make your own way and drop out from society all got mortgages and families and bought right back into that government machine that they were so against. But, there is one way that the 60’s live on and that is this issue of what we call the fight for civil rights but was really the a fight for human rights. The fights of the 60’s helped the American society as a whole to shift its thinking paradigm but there is still that line drawn with black people on one side and then everyone else on the other side. I think that is a flaw of the violence of the time. It reminds me of the article where a black man went into a white restaurant dressed as an African and was treated with complete respect. There is and was a different issue going on, which is power and control of black people and somehow since the 60’s through that fight and the anger of the whites towards blacks, that anger has switched sides. After a few hundred years of abuse and repression black people are still pissed off, understandably so but clearly not over this issue.

Part 2, Exactly what is that influence?

That is a good question exactly how has the 60’s influenced minorities. Black people fight for their rights and are still fighting for their rights. Somehow the government has found new ways to legally instill racism into our society by being harsher on blacks and people with brown skin when it comes to sentencing crimes. To tell you the truth I've written this paper 3 times so far because every time I start to write I get into a rant about what is still wrong. But I think the question is supposed to be what is better. When we started this class I was able to detach myself from all the little details and I had a better sense of how the 60’s instilled a shift of consciousness. But now afterwards I think about the activism of the 60’s which is very inspiring, I cannot for the life of me get away from what I think still needs to change. I am trying my best to focus on positive changes since the 60’s. I would have to say the biggest change in American culture is what we call civil rights but what in truth is Human rights, like I said earlier. Since the 60’s there have been great jumps in the understanding and practice of Human Rights and not treating people like animals and that women are to be treated with respect same as men. The world is not perfect but it is certainly much better than it was back then. The government still condones and allows people to be treated without their basic human rights and civil rights and that is with this label of ”illegal immigrant” which is a whole other rant about private prisons and corruption in our government. But in general there is now a sort of double edged sword. On one side Americans and even new immigrants quickly get this sense of entitlement that you just do not find in other countries. We expect our government to hand over everything to us on a silver platter. Then on the other side of the coin we rarely fight back to the government because we know the government can still do whatever they want. With 9/11, weapons of mass destruction, the Patriot Act, and policeman having ‘the god complex’ there is still an element of that same feeling that I believe was present back in the 60’s. We are all still under the thumb of Uncle Sam. Which is sort of illogical that we know we are under Uncle Sam’s thumb but we still demand the government give us more benefits. This question is a really difficult question. What is different now because of the 60’s. Black people have more opportunities, education is available to everyone, Women can chose to have children or not, and we have a black president. People know deep down that if we gather together and stand up together we can make a change. Yes the 60’s made a difference. Yes things are better. Things are not perfect. But they are much better than if the 60’s activism never happened at all.