Ethnic Groups and Discrimination

Ethnic Groups and Discrimination

White settlers appeared in America in about five centuries ago and they were not the native population of the continent. Nevertheless, it is this ethnic group that gradually established total control over the entire continent, including the US which became the regional leader. In fact, regardless the presence of a large number of the local population and growing immigration from practically all parts of the world, Europeans arrived to America and started an extremely aggressive colonizing policy that led to the dominance of this racial group in the US and, to a significant extent, determined discriminatory attitude of white Americans in relation to other ethnic groups which used to be perceived as inferior.
However, it is necessary to underline that the discriminatory attitude of white Americans to other ethnic groups which were treated as a second-class citizens was mainly caused by the inability of the local population, i.e. Indians, and other ethnic groups that arrived to the US, including African Americans and Asians, to resist to European colonization. In fact, white Americans easily took the power in the country in their hands, established their own rules, laws, and even ethical norms depriving representatives of other ethnic groups, especially Indians and African Americans, of equal rights and opportunity and, what is more, at the first stages of colonization, the oppressed ethnic groups were simply used by white Americans in their own interests. In such a way, white Americans ruled the country and occupied the privileged position in the US compared to other ethnic groups.
Naturally, such a position of white Americans led to the significant inequality between representatives of different ethnic groups. In this respect, it is worthy of mention that representatives of white race supported the policy of discrimination and opposed by all possible means to Civil Rights movement and struggle of other ethnic groups for equal rights and opportunities and improvement of their economic and social position in regard to the privileged whites. On the other hand, it is worthy of mention that it would be a mistake to estimate that absolutely all representatives of white race were convinced racists or that they actively participated in the discrimination of other ethnic groups. In stark contrast, there was a considerable part of white Americans who insisted on the necessity of the existence of equal rights and opportunities for all people in the US, regardless their ethnic origin. In fact, the opposition of this part of white Americans to the discriminatory policy of white elite, especially in the South, was one of the major causes of the Civil War in the US, which above all targeted at the liberation of African American slaves and improvement of the position of oppressed ethnic groups. Later, in the 20th century, there were also a lot of white supporters of Civil Rights movements of African Americans and other ethnic groups. This part of white Americans took an active part in anti-segregation movement, affirmative action, and equal right and opportunities of all Americans.
Nevertheless, regardless the existence of the opposition to the discriminatory and colonizing policy of white Americans, they still in a dominant position and such problems as glass ceiling still exists in the US. In fact, it is possible to estimate that American elite, both political and economic, is still predominantly white, while the access of other ethnic groups to top positions is still quite problematic. However, it is necessary to underline that such a situation is the result of the past development of American society since white Americans colonized the country and therefore they took the power in the US and key positions in the government and economic elite, while other ethnic groups had to strive for larger opportunities.
In conclusion, it should be said that even nowadays white Americans are in a better position than the rest of America society, but nowadays it is determined by objective factors, such as the lack of economic opportunities for other ethnic groups, but the situation may be improved considerably as racial discrimination disapears.


References:
Braude, B. (2002, March). “The Abrahamic Attitudes toward Racism and Slavery. Is Religion Moral?” Annals: History, Social Science.
Carretta, V. (1999, December 22). “Olaudah Equiano or Gustavus Vasa? New Light on an Eighteenth-Century Question of Identity.” Slavery and Abolition.
Goldenberg, D. M. (1999). “The Development of the Idea of Race: Classical Paradigms and Medieval laborations.” International Journal of the Classical Tradition, 5.