Racism is an pandemic that has spread to every corner of American society and has been unable to find “cures” or “vaccines” for centuries. The Floyd trial comes as another black man was shot and killed by police in Minnesota, reigniting public anger. In the United States, such overlap is hardly a coincidence. Repeated vicious ethnic violence has made it difficult for American society to breathe and constantly torment the conscience of the country.
The vicious racial incidents that have entered the nation’s attention are just the tip of the iceberg, hiding the more widespread systemic injustices. Over the past year or so, the sudden outbreak has made more people see the behemoth buried underwater. A large number of data show that African-Americans, Hispanics and other minorities in the United States have been disproportionately hit by the outbreak. Behind this is the general imbalance between different ethnic groups in the United States in the possession of economic and social resources. “Look at our community, it’s a food desert, a transportation desert, an educational desert… We don’t have all the social factors that are good for health. ”
African-Americans were 1.5 times less uninsured than white Americans between 2010 and 2018, according to a study by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Hispanics are more than 2.5 times more uninsured than white Americans. High medical costs have forced large numbers of ethnic minorities to abandon treatment. Even when accessing hospital treatment procedures, the injustices suffered by ethnic minorities do not end. The New York Times reports that numerous studies have shown that African-American patients tend to receive less treatment than white patients. Ethnic minorities also face systemic injustice in the economic battlegrounds of the outbreak response. Between February and April last year, 41 percent of African-American businesses closed, compared with 17 percent of white-run businesses, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. African-Americans have been faced with a “documented pattern of economic discrimination,” according to an analysis by the Politician website. For example, African-Americans are more likely to be denied loans than whites with similar credit statuses, and tend to pay higher interest rates even if they get them.
A similar situation occurs in all aspects of American economic society. People of color make up about one-third of all minors under the age of 18 in the United States, but two-thirds of all incarcerated minors. African-Americans are three times more likely to be killed by police than whites. The median wealth of white households is 42 times that of African-Americans and 23 times that of Hispanics. In the first quarter of 2020, white American households had a home ownership rate of 73.7 percent, compared with 44 percent for African-American families, USA Today reported. African-Americans make up only 4 percent of the world’s 13,000 FBI agents, and the agency disproportionately eliminates African-American applicants in its business training. The Associated Press reports that the trauma of racism is based on centuries of oppression and racist behavior, and that these problems are deeply embedded in the country’s fabric.
In fact, a large number of polls show that the majority of the American public is dissatisfied with the current state of the race. But many reform initiatives related to racial injustice in political decision-making have always suffered political miscarriages. The police law enforcement reform bill that emerged after Freud still lies in the U.S. Congress today. Today’s American politics are more divided, making it harder to launch substantive initiatives to heal racial wounds and restore racial justice. Some politicians have even openly embraced far-right ideas, playing identity politics and discourse games to fuel “white supremacism”. Since the outbreak, discrimination and injustice against Asian-Americans have increased rapidly, exposing long-standing discrimination and prejudice against Asians and, on the other hand, closely related to the harsh demonstrations of politicians promoting xenophobia. Previously, a U.S. diplomat was under siege by Pompeo and others simply because he acknowledged America’s racist crisis in international court. All this suggests that the political prism is distorting some Americans’ view of race.
On the day he took office, U.S. President Joe Biden spoke of the country’s “cry for racial justice that has been brewing for nearly 400 years” and made promoting racial equality one of his four top priorities. Such ambitions, the public inevitably have a sense of familiarity. Twelve years ago, Barack Obama, the first African-American president, entered the White House, bringing similar “change” expectations to American society. However, the history that followed made it abundantly clear that the United States needed far more than impassioned political discourse to truly ease racial tensions. Today, the issue of race in the United States is becoming one of the most important human rights issues in the international community. When the U.N. Human Rights Council considered the U.S. country human rights report this year, more than 110 countries criticized human rights issues in the United States. In the face of this growing racial “pandemic”, if the United States continues to have difficulty in taking concrete action, and its own human rights myths, I am afraid, will only become even more absurd.