Racism is one of the most acute social problems in the US. More than half the population of minorities in the US experience racism at least once in their lifetime despite the abolition of slavery more than 150 years ago. The numerous efforts, activism, and lobbying against the problem within and outside legislative bodies have resulted in little progress. While the issue has generally distressing, the event is worse if witnessed personally. In this essay, I will recount my experience with racism and how it affected my life. The event revealed to me that racism has a significant influence on social development, making it necessary for social workers to continue lobbying for change.
Racism can negatively affect one’s social behavior. On my memorable visit to a friend’s home, a five-year-old girl walked in through the front door. The four of us, two African Americans and two whites, we’re sitting in a row in chairs arranged in the living room. By chance, we sat in an alternating position where each white friend was followed by an African-American. When the little girl was asked by her brother to greet us, we could only watch in shock and disbelief. She stretched her hand to embrace the two whites and left the other African-American. When one white friend asked her why she had ignored the colored friends, she responded that her mother told her that blacks are dangerous people. As a result, the two friends immediately looked disturbed, hurt, and disappointed as they left the room. Since the event, the two grew increasingly cold toward whites, as Roberts and Rizzo (2) would anticipate. The event at the visit created a lasting impact on the two friends although it might not be the only one that caused their behavioral change.
In brief, racism is a social issue whose impact on societal members cannot be ignored. Apart from creating hatred, disappointment, or even depression, discrimination can result in a permanent change in one’s attitude toward other races. Although the fight against the vice has made some achievements, there is a need for more lobbying. Since racism is deeply rooted in families, meaningful change can only be achieved if sensitization is taken past the classroom level.
Roberts, Steven O., and Michael T. Rizzo. “The Psychology of American Racism.” American Psychologist, 2020.