The Invisible Voice: Racism Really Does Sucks

By Brittany Barnes

SC Staff Writer

 

Last week, Richard MacTough wrote an article titled “Racsim Sucks.” The article explains his relationship with a black woman and how his friends did not take too kindly of him dating outside of his race.

Since the spring of 2013 I have been attending East Stroudsburg University. These past two and a half years have been really eye opening. People will stare and frown their faces at you walking down the street.

Drivers have yelled out the “N-word” from the windows of their cars. Or “Y’all black as sh-t.” I think of heard it all.

Personal racism is not the only racism that exists. Institutional racism, otherwise known as discrimination is just as powerful.

In November of 2009, The New York Times published an article titled “In Job Hunt, College Degree Can’t Close Racial Gap.”

In this article Michael Luo tells the story of two black men; Johnny R. Williams and Barry Jabbar Sykes. Both men have impressive résumés and both have a hard time finding jobs.

Williams deleted anything off of his résumé that made him “sound black.” Sykes, who attended a historically black college, now drops his middle name and uses “J” instead.

The American Economic Review reports that job applicants with “black-sounding” names received 50 percent fewer callbacks than those with “white-sounding” names.

The unemployment rate for black male college graduates 25 and older in 2009 was 8.4 percent compared to the 4.4 percent of white male college graduates.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in November 2009 unemployment for whites was 9.3 percent, but 15.6 percent for blacks.

While unemployment for all has dropped drastically, the major gap between blacks and whites is still there. As of July of 2015, unemployment for whites was down to 4.4 percent versus the 9.5 percent unemployment for blacks.

It’s hard to believe sometimes that we still live in a society in which you can’t be yourself. A society where your skin color makes more of an impression than your character traits and achievements.

I will be graduating in the spring of 2016. I can only hope that employers will not judge me because of the color of my skin but for the skills I possess. If not, at least my name sounds white.

 

Email Brittany at:

bbarnes1@live.esu.edu

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