Introduction to Sociology Spring 2020
Social Problems and Social Movements
“The racial distribution of wealth in our current political, social, and economic system is so drastically and inequitably concentrated that a recent report released by The Institute for Policy Studies and CFED states that it would take another 228 years for Black families to attain the same amount of wealth white families currently have.”
In the present society, the black community has been left to fight by them selfs. With the event of the pandemic covid-19, this fact is more visual to the public. With this said even after the pandemic passes black families will be left to the sided and the opportunity of them coming up on top will be slimmer them before. This quote proves that even with the so call help the government has given the black community they will not be in the same level of wealth that white families have.
“The newspapers specialized on news that flattered the poor whites and almost utterly ignored the Negro except in crime and ridicule”. Although both the poor whites and blacks are making low wages and doing the same work the blacks will always look down upon by the whites. Some people when they think about black people it’s always connected to something bad and they’re never given credit where credits due.
” Most persons do not realize how far this failed to work in the south, and it failed because the theory of race was supplemented by a carefully planned and slowly evolved method, which drove such a wedge between the white and black workers that there probably not today in the world two groups of workers with practically identical interests who hate and fear each other so deeply and persistently and who are kept so far apart that neither sees anything of common interests.”
What Dubois is saying how after the civil war the freshly free blacks and poor whites in the south saw virtually no economic growth because of long-standing racially divide which stopped them from being able to link up and fight for higher wages and better working conditions and that racial divide effects are still felt to this day
“Though both experience low wages. Whites fear being supplanted by negroes, while negroes has always been threatened by the substitution of white labor. ”
The poor class whites and free ‘negroes’ was at war with each other, when it would’ve been much more beneficial for the two to come together from the beginning to overcome the injustice of receiving low wages and bad working conditions.
Black Reconstruction and the Racial wage byW.E.B.
Quote: “To the Negro “Freedom” was God to the pporwhite “Freedom was nothing he had more than he had use for to the planter”Freedom”for the poor was laziness and for the rich control of the poor worker for the norther business man “freedom ” wasa way to get richer”
As we can see during reconstruction there was a battle of hate and fear between the two classes : poor white and negros. Both races were looking for the same interest that was to get a more descent salary, more independence from the landowners and also more humanworking conditions . But they could not see this, they were rivals hating each other, the difference between both races was that poor white received a sort of “compensation” by having access to public parks by been able to mix with the rest of white and also assisting to the best schools, of course all this because they neede their votes in courts.
However all those problems only ended in violence and lynching and as a result wages/salaries for those two two classes remainded the same.
“If white and black in the south were free and intelligent there would be friendship and some intermarriage and there ought to be; but none would marry where he did not wish to, and there could be no greater intermingling in the future than in the shameful past, unless this union of races proved successful and attractive”.
What this quote means to me is that when both races unite, they can actually grow off each other and not in all the hatred of the past. This would prove that the races are successful in the future with uniting and nothing would compre to the shameful past.
“The result of this was that the wages of both classes could be kept low, the whites fearing to be supplanted by the Negro labor, the Negroes always being threatened by the substitution of white labor.”
I choose this quote because this is still relevant to this day where people of the minority and people of European descent that are working-class are pinned against. It’s a very smart political move on distracting both races on avoiding the bigger issue in economical stability.
“And yet, despite this, and despite the long step backward toward slavery that black folk have been pushed, they have made withal a brave and fine fight; a fight against ridicule and monstrous caricature, against every refinement of cruelty and gross insult, against starvation, disease and murder in every form. It has left in their souls scars, its deep scars…”
Although slavery ended in 1863 African Americans still continue to face many injustices. They continue the fight against racism, police brutality, economic injustice and more. Slavery has left a big impact on society. Two centuries later and African Americans still have to fight to be treated equally.
“White labor saw in every advance of Negroes a threat to their racial prerogatives, so that in many districts Negroes were afraid to build decent homes or dress well, or own carriages, bicycles, or automobiles, because of possible retaliation on the part of the whites.” This quote from “Black Reconstruction and the Racial Wage is one that really stands out and is mind-boggling. Over the years, America has instilled many laws and amendments to diminish racial inequality, prejudice, and segregation. Despite the many improvements, laws, and rights granted to the African American community today, it is still a certainty that racism is not a thing of the past and it remains alive. Though it may no longer be the norm and it is widely considered to be morally wrong today, many can resonate with the quote and say that a lot of white people do not like for African Americans to succeed.
“We see this more clearly today than the nation of 1868, or any of it’s leaders, could possibly envisage it; but even then, Northern industry knew that universal suffrage in the South, in the hands of Negroes just freed from slavery, and of white people still enslaved by poverty, could not stand against organized industry”. This shows how even after slavery and the Great Depression, the poor class of white and black people faced the same problems. What W. E. B. Dubois is trying to say here, by showing a glimpse of the past, is that instead being at war with each the whites and the blacks should unite to overcome their problems such as working in bad working conditions and receiving low wages.
“If white and black in the south were free and intelligent there would be friendship and some intermarriage and there ought to be; but none would marry where he did not wish to, and there could be no greater intermingling in the future than in the shameful past”.
This explains how if in the south black and white came together, there would be friendships and marriage, but their shameful past prevents this.
“The police were drawn from their ranks and the courts dependent on their votes treated them with such leniency as to encourage lawlessness.” This shows the level of inequality on a social standpoint with the whites dominating the blacks socially getting away with many things.
” It was a vast labor movement of ignorant, Earnest, and bewildered black men whose faces had been around in the mud by their three awful centuries of degradation and who now staggered forward blindly and blood and Industrial upheaval.”
After 300 years of hardship that the African American men went through they were out for the destruction of the Industry. Even if the outcome wasn’t good for either sides they were for the most part ‘blind’ with rage.
According to it states, “poor white laboring class became identified with the planters, and eventually diametrically opposed to those of the mass of white labor, and of course to those of the black laborers. This would throw white and black labor into one class, and precipitate a united fight for higher wage and better working conditions” this quote shows that it’s a racial wage because they did not like what they were working for that it led to all work together and fight for greater opportunities. This is significant because they should as well have rights when there unhappy while on labor force.
“It must be remembered that the white group of laborers, while they received a low wage, were compensated in part by a sort of public and psychological wage… they were admittedly freely with all classes of white people to public functions, public parks, and the best schools.” Though white people were at a disadvantage as well in terms of wages, they weren’t at a disadvantage societally. They could attend any function they please and go to any party or gathering without worry of being mocked or even hurt solely because of their skin color. Even though they were shunned economically, socially they were accepted with open arms and were allowed to be whoever they want to be. They were rewarded in their home life and everyday life, and are only punished in their work lives. Ethnic people were punished across the board, were never given any type of reward or satisfaction for the work they did or the things they achieved.
“The newspaper specialized on news that flattered the poor whites and almost utterly ignored the negro except in crime and ridicule.” The way of racial throughout history has made big news all other the world and when saying of the poor whites can be of surprised to many because were treated more fairly then the african americans in americas society. African Americans were not being treated equally as other race and had a hard time to get their equality and rights and they had to stand together to achieve the goals of each african american.
” It must be remembered that the white group of laborers, while they received a low wage, were compensated in part by a sort of public and psychological wage. They were given public deference and titles of courtesy because they were white. They were admitted freely with all classes of white people to public functions, public parks, and the best schools.” This quote is significant because it shows that although with African Americans working and possibly earning a higher wage than whites, they still were in a way superior for simply being white. They had better educations and were admitted with freely with white people.
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