Something more systemic?

If we want to understand racism in the U.S., as uncomfortable as it might be for us, we have the moral responsibility to open our eyes and see our society more truthfully, and to become more receptive to what it is like to be black in the U.S.

Here are some astonishing statistics that may help bring clarity to this conversation:

  • Black men are about 2.5 times more likely to be killed by police than are white men.
  • If you are black in America, you are six times more likely to be incarcerated than a white person.
  • The median black family has only 10.2 percent of the wealth of the median white family,
  • Blacks are about 2.5 times as likely to be in poverty as whites.
  • The unemployment rate for black workers is consistently about twice as high as it is for white workers.
  • The typical black worker makes 82.5 cents on every dollar earned by the typical white worker.
  • The homicide rate for blacks between the ages of 10-34 years is 13 times the rate of whites.
  • A black child is six times more likely as a white child to have or have had an incarcerated parent.
  • Although black children are approximately 16 percent of the child population nationally, they make up 30 percent of the child abuse and neglect fatalities.

All of this begs the question: Are these statistics a consequence of something more systemic than individual prejudice?

– From “A House Divided: Engaging the Issues through the Politics of Compassion” by Mark Feldmeir – Chalice Press

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