Oppression in America Article Analysis – Week 4 Solution

This article covers Oppression in America Article Analysis.

Oppression in America Article Analysis

Oppression in America: ‘To root this out, we need a movement against racist policies’ by Jamiles Lartey

For years, structural racism in the US has contributed to persistent racial disparities in job opportunities, wealth, culture, and other social constructs. Lartley (2018) discusses the need to address the bias rooted in American politics, policing, and society since the talk of healing is insufficient in addressing racial oppression. People of color have experienced injustices and unfair treatment exerted by the structures and systems that should safeguard and facilitate equality.

The article points out the recent incidences of racial profiling and police involvement that sparked the Black Lives Matter movement. People of color today still experience cultural, socioeconomic, legal, and institutional racial oppression. Lartley (2018) points out that Obama was skeptical about his impact on racial oppression, and he thinks that maybe Black people pushed too far with his presidency. His tenure as president might have set the project of attaining racial equality back, and people seem to be using the wrong approach.

People talk about healing from oppression and discrimination and healing from hate. This approach focuses on Black people healing from racism, but it does not address the racist mentality of white supremacists. People need to do more than racial healing and focus on racist imprints and bias in American politics, policing, and society.   

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The traditional racial structures that fed people with racial ideas still live on, even after the US ended legal enslavement and segregation. Little has been done to address individuals’ perspectives about African Americans. There is a lack of society-wide and intensive interventions that address racist ideas and stereotypes in the US.

Different groups have called for national conversations and healing as vital tools for addressing racism. However, in their mind, they assume people are hateful, and they need to love one another to end racism. Racist ideas run deep within the US social structures. For instance, Lartley (2018) points out that for centuries, White people, from parents to their children, in schools, churches, and media, have conveyed the message that black people are not to be trusted.

Many white people think of black as criminals and violent individuals that need monitoring. These allegations still exist today as we see White women and men calling the police on Black people in their neighborhoods, delivery trucks, and even in their residential buildings. Little has been done to end these perceptions despite advancements such as Barack Obama becoming president, which unfortunately did not affect this ideology.

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Oppression in America Article Analysis
Oppression in America Article Analysis

It created more problems as White people developed their selection of Black people they preferred and can trust (Lartey, 2018). We see Black athletes and other Black people with privileges being treated differently from ordinary Black people. The article quotes Tim Wise, a writer, and anti-racist activist, that whites “hold the larger black community in low regard” but “carve out acceptable space for individuals like Obama who strike them as different.”

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The Obama presidency triggered a white lash, and white nationalists developed a renewed sense of purpose and organization, which saw the majority of white people voting in President Trump. The incidences of oppression where Black people continue to suffer at the hands of white supremacists and police cannot be solved by “healing.”

Police officers have become racist valets for their armed response to white Americans’ unfounded suspicion of black people. The aggressive response, which is part of police roles, ruins an individual’s dignity before realizing innocence. The article requires people to address and move against racist policies if they are serious about living freely while black.

According to Lartey (2018), the only way to end racial oppression is to change social norms and pay more attention to social, economic, and political policies that are biased rather than addressing hostile exchanges between individuals. The article poises that policies are the root of racist ideas that constrain Black individuals’ perspectives. They lead to situations that negatively affect people.


To sum up, racial healing has proven inadequate in addressing racial oppression, and there is a need to pay closer attention to racist policies. No one imagined that racial discrimination would still be deeply rooted in American society at this moment in the twenty-first century.

People are still fighting against police oppression expressed through brutality and white supremacists oppression, a war already fought during the civil rights movement, the Black Power movement, and the Black Panther Party. Healing from oppression and hate does not address the bias in American politics, policing, and society, and it is time to focus on a different approach. To live freely while black, people should address structural, economic, cultural, and political policies and systems that negatively affect Black people. 

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Lartey, J. (2018, June 6). Oppression in America: ‘To root this out, we need a movement against racist policies. The Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2018/jun/06/everyday-racism-in-america-how-to-fix-it      

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