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For My Ethics Class, I Was Asked To Tell Whether The Members Of My Community Look Like Me, And How They May Look Differently. I Also Discussed The Impact Of Race Within My Community

1796 words - 8 pages

Axia College of University of PhoenixAbstract: This paper will discuss if members of my community look like me and in what ways they look the same or different. We will see how community leaders and members of the community treat people who are and are not like me. We will examine if our texts or work manuals contain information by or about people like me and if the local media represents people like me, and if so, in what ways. We will look at some similarities and differences between the people who are in leadership positions in my community and me, and decide if minority group interests are represented within our community. We will theorize that if I could resolve any inequities within my ...view middle of the document...

Over the years, Whites continued to dominate the population through the building of the first Christian based boarding school in the area, Boiling Springs high school (later renamed to Gardner-Webb University), and the incorporation of the town in 1911. Since the town’s incorporation, the city council has consisted of Whites, with no minorities having ever sat as mayor or council member.
Since I fall into the nearly 90% of my community that, for lack of a better word, dominates my town I thought I would look into the diversity of the town and its government. When researching the population of Boiling Springs, I learned that, roughly, 8.7% of the town is African Americans, 1.4% is Hispanic, 0.7% is Asian, and 0.1% is Native American or Alaskan Native (Census, 2000). The lopsided numbers further extend to businesses in the town. Of the 77 businesses in town, less than 1% is owned by minorities. In government, there has never been a minority to hold public office in the town’s 166-year history. With a combined minority population of only 10.7%, one would think that diversity were an unheard of concept, while racist thinking prevailed. However, many of our community members and leaders will readily tell you that, they promote diversity both personally and collectively. There are no signs that they, in fact, do reach out to minorities with encouraging invitations to move in or start a business.
I tried contacting our city council to discuss the diversity of the town officially; however, most of the people I contacted could not find the time to help me with my questions. I finally got the opportunity to interview Mr. Blaine B. Bartee, a local business owner, who was willing to discuss the topic, under the condition that his responses would only be used for academic purposes. Mr. Bartee, a pentagenarian Caucasian, supposes that the town council may claim a fondness for diversity, but few if any are actually willing to work with any minority that may be elected to council. He further stated that since only 1 in 10 townspeople are minority, there would likely be no minorities elected into office in the near future (Bartee, 2008).
When asked what he thought of the way people treat others of similar or different races, Bartee said, “You know the worst crimes we have around here are usually vehicle related: speeding, drunk driving, parking violations. However, those people are just hurting themselves. I don’t think many people in town would intentionally treat anyone badly if they could help it, regardless who they are or what they look like (Bartee, 2008).”I have noticed that the people of Boiling Springs do tend to be friendlier with each other and outsiders than most towns I have visited. My circle of friends is generally the people who live around me, and people I have known for years. My friends are of a variety of races so when I learned how lopsided the town was as far as race went I was truly surprised. Because of my friendships, I assumed that...

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