African-American Studies Essay Sample

African-American Studies

The white people built most of the residential areas for African Americans in the US after a series of institutional practices and private decisions, and as a result, a remarkable increase in discrimination and segregation by the house makers was seen due to the feature of skin color. Society cannot be racially blind if it is based on the racial segregation; for instance, as long as the US cities remain in isolation, there will not be equal opportunities regarding jobs and living standards for African Americans and white people and representatives of any other race. In the segregated US, the existence of such a peculiarity was against the political empowerment, socioeconomic progress, and the entirely participation of the black people in the core stream of American life. However, with the raise in the apartheid system and limited mobility in America, the African Americans managed to create institutions that aided them in coping with the system that was extremely unfriendly to them.

The African Americans opted to gain power in the American cities to acquire political influence and improve their welfare. Accordingly, because of the political support, the African American communities were given a share of city contracts, and municipal and public jobs shared by their electorate portion. Those leaders who received these public resources helped the others to consolidate their position as black people and even advance more due to the already secured economic base. Due to the geographical modification of ethnicity, different ethnic groups within the African American communities were forced to form political alliances since most of them had common political interests (Gordon & Gordon, 2008). For instance, the were solid black Democratic districts that created the potential voting bloc among people of different skin color in city elections whereby the white politicians found a large voting numbers of the black people to be very useful in obtaining new positions. African Americans were represented only by one leader in the electorate, who established independent and symbiotic relationships with the superior power structure of the white people who used these votes as bait for obtaining political favor in return.

Thus, jobs, services, and patronage were to remain within the black residential areas known as ghettos that were still under the control of the black bosses, and no threats emerged from the black people. In addition, this viability relied on the fact that the cities were controlled by state politics, support was plentiful, and the minority population was comprised of the black people (Anderson & Stewart, 2007). Although the black people seemed to be in control of power and wielded higher status within the African American communities, as compared to white people, they still occupied feeble positions since they could be easily defeated. In such states as Washington DC, Detroit, and Baltimore, after the black people assumed power, they destroyed the political machine of the white people to end their patronage. While in such cities as Philadelphia and Chicago, where the African Americans were able to acquire power by forming coalitions with the white people, the latter regained control over the former since these alliances were not stable politically.

Housing policies saw racial gentrification by the state, which ensured that the colored and the poor were housed in the dilapidated urban centers, while the wealthy white people were granted funds and licenses to secure better homes to avoid the suburbs (Asante, 2013). James L. Farmer, Jr and George Houser formed civil right organizations, such as Congress of Racial Equality (CORE), which helped the African Americans form the working class to reside in controllable areas. The black leaders from the Ford Foundation also plotted the establishment of the fold and effecting systematic changes in the ghettos. Through this model, the Ford Foundation was able to control the black community with the CORE experience being a base for the achieving of particular aims of the African Americans during the apartheid system in America.

A new public-private corporation established by the national program known as the Rockefeller Foundation Program, which was founded by John D. Rockefeller for housing, was set to benefit the black people as the minority group. This development plan later appeared to be the most controversial of all since it focused on the privatization of the building enterprise by making use of tax incentives that encouraged favoring the white people rather than focusing on its main aim of expanding the home ownership opportunities for African Americans (Gordon & Gordon, 2008). This foundation later affected the construction and design of the urban fields for studies and city planning.

Education was also a major tool used by the African Americans in fighting apartheid in the US since most of them dwelled in poor rural areas where they could not go to proper learning institutions (Gordon & Gordon, 2008). There was a need to educate the African American communities and prepare them to compete for white-collar jobs in an extremely competitive job market. Often, the black people were associated with blue-collar jobs, which were characterized with heavy work with less pay in most of the cases. Education was seen as the only tool that could grant the African American an opportunity to take jobs and participate in activities that were reserved only for the white people. For this reason, the leaders of such foundations and corporations as Carnegie Corporation, which was headed by Andrew Carnegie, and Rockefeller Foundation decided to undertake joint projects with an aim of constructing education systems for African Americans that spread across the US and the Caribbean countries (Massey & Denton, 2013).

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However, the white people remained the overall leaders in the education system on all matters concerning civilization and issues relating to the US soil. For instance, the Phelps-Stokes Fund Foundation chartered the management of the black people’s education in the US by strengthening individual colleges to offer strong professional classes for lawyers and doctors, which was tasked with the responsibility of raising the moral and general physical level of the black communities living in ghettos (Gordon & Gordon, 2008). The fields available for educating the black people were mostly connected with their natural environment, such as farming, which led to the formulation of a special education and curriculums for the African Americans.

The involvement of major foundations, such as Rockefeller, Ford, and Carnegie, in the movements for the black people’s civil rights was specifically organized for social control to help the African Americans in coping with the apartheid system in America (Gordon & Gordon, 2008). The quality of education in the African American colleges started to improve since these colleges had begun getting grants from these foundations. In addition, these associations helped in the enhancement of communication between the police and the black community; as a result, riots in ghettos were minimized (Asante, 2013). The social justice, with the aid of the Ford organization, aimed at improving the programs’ leadership with the black people being the minority group, also contributed to better race relations approaches, supporting policies that were oriented on poverty and race research, as well as increasing the legal availability of resources.

Concisely, the African American communities in America had to cope with the apartheid in many ways, such as educating themselves, and engaging in politics to win favors, which would enable them to win the fight against poverty. Despite the fact that the institutions aimed at improving the life of black people faced obstacles that hindered achieving their objectives, it still managed to help the African Americans to deal with infamous apartheid in the US. Although many of these methods worked, some differed in their operation mode, and, as a result, they started working differently from the policies laid by the African Americans.

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