Friday, April 13, 2012

interracial relationships

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African Americans and whites in the United States have witnessed a large amount of social


and cultural desegregation of. Through years of desegregation, however, social and


cultural differences still exist. They exist in the institution of marriage. Americans have


been and are continually moving slowly away from segregation. In the past forty years,


Cheap University Papers on interracial relationships

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laws have transformed schools, jobs, voting booths, neighborhoods, hotels, restaurants


and even the wedding altar (Ties that Bind). Since the 160s, when housing


discrimination was outlawed, many African Americans moved into predominately white


neighborhoods. The steadily growing areas in the west and southwest are least segregated,


because these areas never had the…entrenched African American and white sections of


town (Afgen).


There are other signs that are visibly seen in the areas of education. A study, done by the


University of Michigan, shows that integration on campuses occur on a regular basis. The


racial lines are crossed routinely; about 50% of African Americans and 15% of whites


reportedly study together and a percentage close to that also eat together. Socially, there


has been a steady focus of opinion on a variety of racial issues. Since 17, surveys have


asked whether the respondent would favor a law making inter-racial marriages illegal.


Since 101, there has been a ban on these interracial marriages in Alabama (Afgen). In


180 the results showed that 0% of whites and 18.% of African Americans favor such a


law. By 14, data showed 14.7% and .% respectively. Similar trends have also been


observed in busing and even integrated social clubs (Ties that Bind). A simple analysis


shows that complete desegregation is moving in the right direction.


Regardless of these examples of desegregation, a deeper look shows that there are still


signs of racial discriminations, mostly seen in the institution of marriage between African


Americans and whites. By 16, there were more than 40,000 marriages between blacks


and whites, according to the census updates, of which fewer than 1 in interracial


marriages were between African Americans and whites in the 160 (Ties that Bind).


These numbers do not reflect the spread of desegregation very well. If there is such a large


spread of desegregation between African Americans and whites from the past to the


present, then the numbers should reflect a much larger count of interracial marriages


between these races. This is, however, untrue. There are less such barriers African


American and white couples face today.


One of the major barriers that face these couples does not come from themselves but


rather from family disapproval. Ruth, an African American woman, and her husband


Steve, a white man, were married in 18. They have no prejudice toward each other and


they share the equal love of any other married couple. Problems did not arise from friends


because they shared friendship with people from different races along with those who


looked at the person, not the color. However, they had problems with other people, such


as Steves mother. His mother had sat him down and asked him why he could not marry


his own kind. Steve, of course, stood firm and married Ruth, which unfortunately resulted


in the ties between his mother and himself breaking away. Robert, an African American


man, married Michelle, a White Lutheran woman. Not one of Michelles relatives attended


the wedding, except for her mother. Her father was furious that he was expected to accept


an African American into the family. It is not the disfavor of strangers that hurts these


couples the most, but rather the disfavor of family(Newsline). Territa, a African


American women, had broken up with Todd, her White husband, several times before


getting married because of the initial reaction of Todds family (Newsline). Nevertheless,


they did not let their familys disapproval stop them from continuing on what they had.


In another occurrence, Fred and Anita Prinzing, both white, were aware that interracial


marriage brought problems. Both their son and daughter married African Americans. Fred


and Anita believed that they were not prejudiced, but as far as their children were


concerned, they couldnt justify the prejudice they felt for their children marrying African


Americans. The only way they believed that they could have been persuaded from


prejudice was the fact that they had been exposed to it growing up around their parents


(Newsline).


Religion is another major barrier that African American and white couples encounter. In A


survey done by Earnest Porterfield on interracial marriages shows this point. The


majority of couples actively involved in Christian churches before marriage, discontinue


church membership and attendance after marriage (yahwehshalom). An increasing


number of couples in America are crossing this racial and cultural ditch. He later states


that A close look at the Old Testament reveals misinterpretation. Opposition to


intermarriage arises when people of God many those who worship a God other than


Yahweh. These couples are searching for churches that feel like home. If national trends


are any indication, the American churches need to be prepared to face a growing


phenomenon. Until that happens interracial married couples will meet with resistance from


religious people who have been reported as saying that if their own children married


African Americans, they would kill them.Myra adds …the church must repent not only


for bad theology but also for failing to protest racist laws in the past (yahwehshalom).


Troubles do not stop here for interracial married couples. The problems that are faced by


interracial parents are mirrored in their children. On one occasion the Bronzes had sent


their daughter, Shelly, whos physical features resemble an African American, to a party.


The Bronzes had never met the family, who are African American, that put up the party


and decided that one of them should go to say hello. Chuck, Shellys father, knocked on


the door and was met with disbelief. The family was surprised that Shellys father was a


African American (Newsline). Older children of interracial marriage parents also face


problems. They have to make a choice as to which parents culture to adopt. Halle Beny


stated that it is important that multicultural individuals make a choice about race early in


the life because even if they identify themselves as interracial they will still be


discriminated against as a person of color in this country (Ties that bind). Knowing all


these barriers and problems, what brings African American and white people together?


A study of thirty nine middle class African American and white couples in New York


found that most of these couples had experienced being pulled over by police who


suspected either the African American women to be a prostitute or the African American


man to be a rapist (Ties that Bind). Edger, a white Jewish man, and Jean, a African


American Baptist women, on more than one occasion have been stopped and arrested by


police because they were walking arm in arm (Newsline). Races have mixed, going back


to the early days. Over time, other races have blended with whites without question.


African American mixing, however, has been accountable for the one drop theory, which


has defined a way to permanently separate African Americans. The one drop theory was


reinforced in the landmark Plessy vs. Ferguson Supreme Court ruling in 186. The


Plaintiff, Homer Plessy, argued that segregation was wrong and he should not be


discriminated against because, after all, he was only one-eighth African American. The


justices, however, ruled that he must ride in the separate but equal coaches reserved for


coloreds. Almost I 00 years later, in 186, the Supreme Court, upheld a decision forcing


a Louisiana woman who was only one-thirty second African American, to be legally


declared as African American. (Halloway).


According to a study done, one consistent sign associated with intermarriage is social class


and/or status. One reason that black women marry white men is to increase their station


in life (Staples). African American out-marriage becomes gradually more common when


moving up the occupational scale and more common among higher educated African


Americans. Among whites the pattern is reversed. It is believed that whites are more likely


to marry a African American spouse when it allows them to marry a partner of high


socio-economic prestige (Timeline). The appreciation of a partner is the beauty and the


common ability to communicate. The main reason for marriage and love is what brings


them together (Times that Bind).


It is often said that religion, family and the attitudes of other people, generally are the main


causes to the problems we see in interracial relationships as well as marriages. It is said to


be difficult, if not impossible, to change parents attitudes along with the attitudes of the


earlier generations, to influence society into accepting the patterns of the new generations


identitys. The older generation will never change. They have believed this to be true since


the day they were taught it. This present generation, whos guilt comes from causing


friction, proves the next generation must be open-minded to accept and understand future


patterns of new marriages. While these attitudes of prejudices in peoples minds are


suppressed and, hopefully soon done away with, the only way to make changes involving


opinions on segregation is to teach and reinforce it in our children.


Works Cited


Afgen. 101 Ban on Interracial Marriages. Online. America Online. Internet. 8


September,


1.


Greenwood. Crossing the Line. Online. America Online. Internet. 8 September,


1.


Newsline. Interracial Marriage. America Online. Internet. 8 September, 1.


Sistahspace. Interracial Ties That Bind. America Online. Internet. 8 September,


1.


Staples, Robert. Interracial Relationships A Convergence of Desire and Opportunity. p


1.


Canada, 1.


Websters New World Dictionary. Pretence Hall 14.


Yahweshalom. The Prohibition against mixing the races. America Online. Internet. 8


September, 1.





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