Them And Us: Racism Essay

4599 words - 18 pages

Racism: Has It Changed? - Racial Profiling "I have a dream," cried Martin Luther King Jr. His dream was filled with images of equality and freedom. Since King's famous speech, and many steps towards racial equality have been taken, yet at the same time racism is far from gone. As we have been working so hard as a country to eliminate racism and prejudice we have allowed new forms of racism to sneak up on us. For the most part, "racism today is discredited and is condemned to a clandestine existence" (Beneton 1). Intentional segregation in schools, restaurants, buses and other public areas is clearly no longer accepted. The minorities and the majorities for the most part can go where they want when they want. The types of racism we see now can be considered under the table, making them hard to prove and identify. Racial profiling is probably the largest form of racism in America today. This type of racism is seen in our banks, our hotels, our restaurants, and even our shopping centers. In an article titled "Shopping While Black" the author, Adam Fifield, talks about many instances where black men and women are discriminated against while shopping. One example in his article is about a black woman named Paula Hampton. Hampton was shopping at Dillard's with her two younger daughters. After shopping for almost 45 minutes, Hampton had found a few things she wanted to buy. As she was being politely helped at the register, a security guard rudely interrupted them. "One of our associates," he said, "saw you put something under your coat." (Fifield 1) Hampton, not even wearing a coat, was stunned by his accusation. Without even asking the guard reached for her bag and emptied it upside down on the counter. After thoroughly sifting through her new clothes the security guard responded with "that's fine," and walked away. As he walked away Hampton told the guard that she did not appreciate being accused of shoplifting. Almost unbelievably, the guard fired back sternly by saying he had not accused her of shoplifting. After several hours of arguing and complaining, she had still not gotten anywhere with anyone. Hampton and her husband decided to file a suit against Dillard's a year later and won.Although celebrities rarely run into racial profiling, they are still at times subject to its horrible assumptions. Oprah Winfrey one time was absurdly ignored when she and a friend tried to enter a store. They banged on the doors after calling the store from across the street and being told they here open, yet the employees were still obviously ignoring her. When she called the store a few days later and asked for an explanation, the manager, completely shocked, tried to tell her that there had been two black transsexuals who had robbed the store earlier that week. For some reason they believed Winfrey and her friend might be the two thieves coming back again.Shopping is not the only time you will see racial profiling. One type of racial profiling that has made the...

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