Race and Ethnicity

Is the “post-racial society” dream dead?


Race continues to be an undercurrent in American society. African-Americans have made economic and educational progress, but continue to lag behind whites in jobs and wealth. The Supreme Court has ruled that voters may decide whether state universities can apply affirmative action policies during the admissions process. Researchers say public schools are more segregated now than before integration, and blacks are incarcerated at a rate double their share of the population. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. believes shorter sentences for minor, nonviolent crimes could help rectify the incarceration imbalance, but some say that would threaten public safety. Civil rights activists say increasingly common “stand your ground” laws are racially biased. As the 2014 midterm elections approach, some states are enacting election laws critics say discriminate against minorities and the poor, while other states are making it easier for all to vote. Meanwhile, public reaction to racially offensive remarks indicates the debate over racial discrimination isn’t over.

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