Racial Ethnic Groups in the United States

Last Updated: 12 Mar 2023
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Even in 2013 racism and ethic differences are a struggle in the United States. This is mainly due to the fact that unlike fifty years ago when the country was split just black and white, there are now more races involved. Granted, the generations now are much more knowledgeable about the ethic differences, most don’t see any harm in a person judged based on their skin color. However, those who do still find it a problem have taken it to the extreme to let their opinions be known.

Take for instance in week five’s reading; the hate that was betrayed against Asian Americans in the radio show where over two dozen Asian Americans were physically injured, thirteen of which had to go to the hospital because their African American classmates decided to fight. However that is not the worst part of that situation. Instead of the security guards and teachers doing something to stop the hate, they let it continue. And this is in every race. Many people in today’s day and age tend to pick more on the Latino groups of America.

This is mainly due to the fact that a lot of them are not in the United States legally. Included in these races are people of Mexican, Puerto Rican, and Venezuelan heritage. The main reason for many of these immigrants to come to the United States is to receive a better life. But with this immigration mainly fail to assimilate properly to their local neighborhoods to live the American way. By assimilating in the United States one is able to adopt the cultural traits and/or identity of the host group, Americans, and/or integrate into the primary networks and secondary organizations of the host group. (Feagin and Feagin)

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While coming into the country illegally the Latino race automatically puts a bad taste in most American’s mouths because on top of them coming into the country without proper paperwork, they take away jobs that could be used for other Americans simply because Latinos are known for taking a lower pay so that they may be paid in cash verses check based on the simple fact that they do not have proper documentation to be working in the United States. According to Milton Gordon, author of the influential Assimilation in American Life, there are many problems with assimilation.

This though involved mainly European groups coming into the United States that they were not willing to adjust to the living styles of another country. This being the main problem of immigrants is that they will not forego racial difference to fit into the country. Gordon suggested that this will be the main problem with America in the future. (Page: 31, Racial and Ethnic Relations Census Update, Ninth Edition, 9E by Clairece Booher R Feagin and Joe R. Feagin, Pearson) This of course is not the case with all Latinos though.

There are many people of these races that live in the United States legally that are hardworking and want to the properly the American way. These are the kind of people though that end up getting left in the dust because not many realize that some people want to be a part of the country to that extend. These Latin Americans have fully comprehended the concept of acculturation, or cultural assimilation, which is the change of one group’s important cultural patterns to those of the host or dominant group. (Feagin and Feagin) This doesn’t mean though that Latin Americans, or any race, have to give up their entire cultural habits.

It simply means that they understand that they came into a different country and they respect the fact that some things culturally are done differently. For instance there were many situations brought up in the video on 60 Minutes regarding the American Canal. Americans see that canal as a water source for their vegetables in the winter, however those from Mexico see it as a dangerous way into the United States. This is of course a problem between the two races because the Americans don’t feel they need to alter the safety of the canal so that Mexicans don’t continue to keep drowning in the water in attempts to get into the country illegally.

Asian Americans have a huge burden on them just like the Latino races but it’s not as much as being considered “illegal”. Their pressure is more of an educational outlook. They are expected to excel in school and get great grades at high education at the best colleges. Some of this plays into their benefit though considering the life they will be able to live by better educating themselves. They are pressured with these expectations through their own families though too.

For instance it is assumed that if a Caucasian American meets an Asian American while they are at school, such as college, it may be assumed that the Asian American is good at math. It might not be verbally said, but as Americans that is a trait that Asian Americans have always had. This is a trait though that does not , and should not, be given up with trying to fit into the American way of life. If anything a trait like this only enhances living in America. Take for instance the breakdown of educations in America.

Asian-Indian Americans lead the country when it comes to obtaining a Bachelor’s degree from college with 70.1%, Chinese Americans follow with 52. 1%; Filipino Americans 48%, Vietnamese Americans at 27. 8%, Asian-Indian Americans with 70. 1%, and White Americans with 30. 7%. (Page: 338, Racial and Ethnic Relations Census Update, Ninth Edition, 9E by Clairece Booher R Feagin and Joe R. Feagin, Pearson) Even according to Gordon, the transition of Asian Americans into the United States society is a lot easier that other races and it has a lot to do with their ability to want to learn and help not only their culture and people but the society of people in which they surround themselves.

According to the research done in the Feagin and Feagin text the amount of Asian students not only applying but getting admitted into college is increasing every year. A study shows that in 1979 2. 6 percent of students admitted into Brown University were of Asian descent. In 1993 however, it jumped to 14. 8 percent of the students accepted. Many researchers though such as James Madore of the Christian Science Monitor label Asian Americans as “model minorities”. However they still have their troubles.

For instance the National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA) argued with U. S. Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas for his use of the term “model minority” when describing Asian Americans. Thomas argued that Asian Americans “transcended the ravages caused even by harsh legal and social discrimination” and should not be beneficiaries of government affirmative action because they are “overrepresented in key institutions. ” (Page339: , Racial and Ethnic Relations Census Update, Ninth Edition, 9E by Clairece Booher R Feagin and Joe R. Feagin, Pearson)

The term “model minority” can be taken as a good or bad quality as explained in the above paragraphs it is all a matter of who is saying it and in what context they are using the title. But it expresses the fact that Asian Americans still face hard consequences in the United States based on assimilation and acculturation because even though some of their traits from their own heritage are beneficial to Americans, Americans then feel offended that someone is coming into the country trying to take over schools and education.

It is hard to be an immigrant in the United States and that is understood by a lot of people in the country. But at the same time Americans want to keep their reputation of living the American dream with excellent jobs and families that love and support each other with the right to stick up for what they believe in and the will to pursue their dreams in whatever they wish. It is the some groups of Americans that have backed down to the immigrants of the country and have been belittled by those assimilating into the United States.

It is these Americans that create the hate in the country against entire races verses individuals. It is the lack of education on Americans that plays into part of the frustration of the country. No one notices those trying to do things the correct way but that may be because there are so many immigrants in the country that are illegal and take advantage of the fact that they don’t have to do anything to stay in the country. But this is not “Living the American Dream”.

Immigrants that are taking advantage of any state’s aid, or not agreeing to file proper documentation to become a citizen to receive a paycheck instead of a lower pay but being paid in cash are a huge part of the problem. Taxes play into this just as much. Immigrants to America are not stupid. America taxes everything and everyone is required to pay them. Not everyone does though. Having many other races enter the country in this day and age gives those of this generation a clue to what happened many years ago when whites and blacks were ordered to stay separated.

There are still parts of the country that blacks are not welcomed and they are discriminated against. It is almost as if no laws were overturned. Today there are still about eleven states in the country without a street dedicated to Martin Luther King Junior, and some states say they do not plan on including that street in the maps anytime soon. With racial issues almost always a battle it is almost near impossible to say that everyone one day will be entirely happy and created equal. The battle between White Americans against Asian Americans against Latino Americans and African Americans seems to be a never ending battle.

In his research, Gordon believe that “the integration of African Americans into the core economy and society is well under way”. (Page 205: , Racial and Ethnic Relations Census Update, Ninth Edition, 9E by Clairece Booher R Feagin and Joe R. Feagin, Pearson)This indicates simply that the full migration of different races, though thought to be fixed many years ago, still has many small details to be drawn out. Every person whom goes to school learns about the horrible way that African Americans were treated before any slavery laws were abolished.

It is a part of any history class at an early age. Every child in America should be able to answer simple questions such as what was Jim Crow segregation. Could this be that years down the road history is repeating itself only with another race, which race will it be? Will it be all of them? Will it be illegal immigrants? African Americans though were willing to fight for what they believed they had a right to, they stood up and protected themselves and many dies fighting for what they believe in, which is the exact way that Americans are known to live their lives.

That quality in itself is one of the most solid reasons as to why African Americans are treated equally in America now as opposed to having different drinking fountains and bathrooms and having to sit in the back of the bus. Many of the challenges facing African Americans today are more subtle and involve a struggle that is more within the African American community than without. Many of these challenges involve fighting negative stereotypes that were born from hip hop videos or the misuse of power and authority by well-known figures in the African American community.

The struggle involves pushing against institutional barriers that have been strengthened by those in favor of maintaining a historical precedent or the status quo. For example, it oftentimes seems easier for city leaders to support the new school district that educates the suburban community rather than funding the struggling inner city schools. And simply because an organization has never had an African American leader, does not mean that it never should.

Finally, the struggle involves a continued determination to resist an apathetic attitude toward the problems in the African American community. In many instances, it is not the opinionated few who determine the overall outcome, but the indifference of the majority who are usually directly affected by the decision that they fail to be a part of. Discrimination is described as the actions carried out by members of dominant groups, or their representatives, that have a differential and harmful effect on member of subordinate racial or ethnic groups.

Since times of racial issues the word discrimination can be used for other things also. Many people even in the year 2013 are being discriminated for physical or mental differences too. There is so much hate in the United States yet and many people are not aware of it. Discrimination due to skin tone, physical or mental differences can have long tern effects on a person and often cause, like in the Asian cultures, attempts at suicide. These are actions that can be avoided if people would just educate themselves on the hate that is still in the world.

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Racial Ethnic Groups in the United States. (2016, Aug 28). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/racial-ethnic-groups-in-the-united-states/

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