Race and American Culture
In Living Color: Race and American Culture this article, the author Omi keep reminding that colored people are still treated unequally in the society, and racial issue has been a problem through the time in America. As Omi’s claim, it’s normal that racial and stereotype always happen in popular areas like television, film industry, sports or music industry, and this situation won’t stop because those racists describe it as “human nature” (113). To some extent, I agree with Omi that inequality still exist in America, and Omi’s examples of how racists look like in society and the reason why somebody are still racist is their explanation of “human nature” (113). On the other hand, this passage is little incomplete for readers, because Omi just shows some examples but not solutions, which may make readers little confused about why the author uses so many examples, just for explaining racism is exist? Therefore, this passage lacks solutions for the example he gives.
Omi uses many historical facts to show reveal that white American separate themselves from other racial groups like “black American” or “Asian American,” etc. “A crucial dimension of racial oppression in the United States is the elaboration of difference or “otherness”.” However, nowadays, no matter which race people come from, the public has already started to attach importance to this issue and social medias help a lot about this. The public already has a common sense that discrimination is totally wrong. Jerry Davich, who is a contact reporter says that some universities or colleges, in order to protect their reputation, some schools may check students’ social media to make sure they the potential “bad apples” before enrolling them (par 4). Therefore, the situation changed a lot that more and more people regardless their race are trying to solve the problem, and the difference between “us” and “otherness” is getting smaller.
Omi gives many details about racism happens in popular culture like film and television, which can be wild spread easily and can impact audience’s thought unconsciously. As Omi says about them, “have been notorious in dissemination images of racial minorities which establish for audiences what these groups look like, how they behave, and, in essence, “who they are.”” (115). She described racism happens in popular culture precisely, but she doesn’t give any solutions about it. Celebrities can give a speech to the public as a leading to other actors or actress to point out the racism phenomena happens in popular culture, so maybe directors will give colored people more chances next time.
The other example is our “common sense” (116) such as “all Asians are like” described as “assumptions about race and racial minorities in the United States are both generated and reflected in the stereotypes” (116). Omi says a Chinese McDonald’s offers “Shanghai McNuggets” with teriaky sauce, which Chinese named burger and Japanese named sauce are confused in one product. However, there’s a exact difference among every racial minority group, the prior behavior clearly offend other nations. People from minority group should point out when some people comments race with their “common sense” (116) and for some industries which make similar mistakes, they should make official announcement so that they won’t mislead the public about “common sense” (116).
This article is convincing about why we say racism still exist in American society, but this article doesn’t contain solutions of the examples he gives. Therefore, I think this article is incomplete, Omi should provide solution or some methods available for reference.
Omi, M. (n.d.). “In Living Color: Race and American Culture.”
Davich, Jerry. “Davich: Do colleges look at prospective students’ social media?”
Post-Tribune, 16 May 2015, www.chicagotribune.com/suburbs/post-tribune/opinion/ct-ptb-davich-college-social-media-st-0518-20150515-story.html.