A Sociological Perspective of Race and Social Structure

Length: 3 Pages 664 Words

The Martin Luther King keynote address fundamentally challenged my understanding and perception of social structure and race in the United States. The address has encouraged me to become more critical and aware of the social environment that I live in. The relationship between social structure and race is one that many people cannot see or are seemingly unaware of, because it is not obvious to us, especially those of the white race. It is interesting to ponder the advantages that coincides with being of the white race and the effects it has on social structure, and on others races, predominately people of color. Being born into the white race is almost like being given a free pass for certain privileges and benefits which people of color are short-changed of. Simple things like attending a school where my peers and teachers are predominately of my race or never having to worry about being unfairly or rudely treated because of the color of my skin are taken for granted Continue...

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It is also to my advantage that I am of the white race because my heritage and culture are accepted norms of society. I will never have to worry as I am sitting in a college classroom if people are questioning if I really earned the right to be there or was it because of affirmative action that I was accepted. This is yet another example of 'white privilege' Another display of white privilege, has arisen since the terrorist attacks on 9-11-01. I believe most of the time this subtle racism occurs more often then we would tend to admit. If the tables were turned, and my fiance and I had been of a different race, it may not have been as easy for us to get an apartment so fast. It is important for society to have a sociological perspective and try to breakdown the invisible rules that guide our social structure in regards to race. The first thing that we had to do was find an apartment. To stop 'white privilege' we first must nationally realize there is a problem and together try to fix it. Now when I think back on that situation I did not feel threatened or uncomfortable hunting for apartments over ever think that I would be turned down for an apartment because of my race. There is no reason for me to given more privileges and benefits because I am of the white race. Arab-Americans have learned what it is like to be Black in America. Arab-Americans are harassed, hated, profiled, feared, accused, and interrogated as a repercussion of the attacks. In one day of apartment hunting we visited four different apartments.


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