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Saturday, May 27, 2023

Black People Can't Swim? What's So Funny? I Want To Laugh

Do you believe that racism is not a problem? Consider this example: The actions of those who promote white supremacy have made it more difficult for our grandparents to pursue careers in real estate. Despite being able to enter the industry themselves, they helped establish segregation laws that restricted housing options, lowered property values, and prevented people of color from attending quality schools, including law schools. 

Consider this scenario: Your grandparent helped send your uncle to a prestigious law school, only for him to become an attorney who focuses on prosecuting people of color in the same neighborhoods where redlining laws have had a disproportionate impact. 

Furthermore, some individuals have the audacity to perpetuate harmful stereotypes, such as the belief that Black people cannot swim. However, this stereotype has been used to justify the lack of access to swimming pools in communities of color. It is likely that your grandparent is familiar with this issue.

Racism is a problem that has plagued our society for centuries, and unfortunately, it continues to exist in many forms today. Despite the progress that has been made in the fight against racism, there are still those who deny its existence or downplay its impact.

One of the most insidious forms of racism is institutional racism, which is embedded in our laws, policies, and practices. Redlining, as mentioned in the sliver above, is a prime example of institutional racism. This practice, which was rampant in the mid-20th century, involved denying loans and other financial services to people of color, effectively segregating them in certain neighborhoods and preventing them from building wealth through home ownership.

This type of institutional racism has had long-lasting effects on communities of color, leading to disparities in education, health, and economic opportunity. For example, the lack of access to quality education, which was a direct result of redlining and other discriminatory practices, has led to a persistent achievement gap between white students and students of color.

Another form of racism is individual racism, which is manifested in the beliefs and actions of individuals. This can take many forms, from overt acts of discrimination to subtle biases that affect the way people are treated in everyday life. For example, the stereotype that Black people can't swim, as mentioned in the sliver, is a harmful and untrue belief that has been used to justify the lack of access to swimming pools and other aquatic facilities in communities of color.

Individual racism can also lead to acts of violence and hate, as we have seen in recent years with the rise of white supremacist groups and hate crimes against people of color. It is important to acknowledge that these acts of violence are not isolated incidents, but rather a symptom of a larger problem of systemic racism that continues to affect our society.

In conclusion, racism is a problem that cannot be ignored or downplayed. It is a complex issue that requires all of us to work together to address, through education, advocacy, and action. We must confront the institutional and individual forms of racism that exist in our society and work towards building a more just and equitable future for all.

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