Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Disparities do exist; we just wish they did not: An education point

We like to say there is no difference with people, that we are a melting pot, or that we are post racial and color-blind. I wish this were true. There is an issue of discrimination between people of color those who are not.

We see the unequal treatment of minorities by law enforcement: “Investigation of the Ferguson Police Department” Ferguson Report

Really the report is no shocker, the evidence was always right there plain to see. What really needs to be revealed is how many places all over the country have similar statistics; that would be a shocker because no one wants to hear that.

We see the disparities of prison sentences or just the court system in general. We have 17 year old boys of color getting sentenced to life sentences with no hope of parole; basically we are raising prisoners not men. Racial Disparities

Or the case of Kalief Browder, held at Rikers Island for three years without trial at the age of 16, accused of a crime he did not commit. His bail was set at $10,000 for allegedly stealing a backpack and his family could not afford the bail. He was brutalized in jail by guards and beaten by other inmates (on video). He refused all plea deals, and the charges were eventually dropped after someone brought his plight to light, but after three years of hell he could not cope and committed suicide in 2015, he was 22 years old. Kalief Browder

“The quality of health care you receive likely depends on your skin color” “More than a decade after the Institute of Medicine issued a landmark report showing that minority patients were less likely to receive the same quality health care as white patients, racial and ethnic disparities continue to plague the U.S. health care system. That report, which was published in 2002, indicated that even when both groups had similar insurance or the same ability to pay for care, black patients received inferior treatment to white patients” Quality of Health Care and Skin Color

Most recently, we are hearing about the rise of opioid deaths, and the concern that addicts get treated and not jailed. “Heroin vs. Crack: society shifts in its treatment of addicts” Heroin vs. Crack

“During the crack-cocaine epidemic, police pounced with force on inner-city neighborhoods. Congress and states passed mandatory sentencing laws. With the current heroin crisis in small towns and suburbs, addicts are treated as just that: addicts who need help, not jail cells”. (American Violet, strong movie about this) Regina Kelly Story

Any family that has to go through the pain of drug addiction has my sympathy, but unfortunately they do not all have the sympathy of the court system. You have people of color in jail for 20 years because they used drugs, and sometimes the family is there with them because they lived in the same house.

America, we have a problem that we refuse to talk about, and do not have the will to solve. We will never achieve true equality unless we fix this system.  This is education, we should be educating the masses about this.

Dr Flavius A B Akerele III

The ETeam

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