The struggles minorities have faced because of racism are segregation, violence, and poverty.

Essay by itsmollyannCollege, Undergraduate October 2009

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In the words of philosopher Abraham Joshua Heschel, "Racism is the gravest threat to man - the maximum hatred for a minimum reason." Racism has always been a problem in America. It is a common thought that racism does not exist anymore. But the truth is that racism remains a huge issue in this country. Although America has made efforts to eliminate racism, we have still not become successful in truly defeating the issue. The struggles minorities have faced because of racism are segregation, violence, and poverty.

In 1865 the American Civil War ended and the US Congress freed all slaves in the nation. But that did not put an end to the discrimination they still endured. In 1876, racial discrimination had been set by the Jim Crow Laws, which ordered strict segregation of the races. Examples of the Jim Crow laws were the segregation of public schools, public transportation, public restrooms, restaurants, and more.

These laws mandated that these public facilities be "separate but equal" for white and black Americans. In reality, this led to treatment and accommodations that were usually inferior compared to the facilities provided for white Americans. For eighty-nine years, African Americans were forced to deal with unfair and unreasonable segregation. It wasn't until the 1950's that the civil rights movement began, and African Americans began to make attempts to outlaw racial discrimination. W.E.B. Du Bois, Malcolm X, and Martin Luther King Jr. are among the most famous of the civil rights activists. Their forms of protest included boycotts, "sit-ins", and many other nonviolent activities. Their efforts paid off. By 1968, all forms of segregation had been declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court. Racial discrimination was illegal in schools, businesses, and all other public facilities. Separate bathrooms, water fountains, and schools all had disappeared. But...