Impact of Brown Vs Board of Education Essay

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Racial Equality

Like other forms of discrimination and bigotry in the United States, racism has thankfully started to tail off and reduce over the years and generations. However, this is happening at a pace that is frustratingly slow and plodding. Court decisions and new laws passed throughout the 20th and 21st centuries have led to more inclusion and less institutional racism and other bigotry. However, de facto racism and other forms of bigotry still remain present and problematic. This report shall cover a lot of the facets of all of this including how Brown vs. Board of Education changed things, what President Kennedy perhaps should have done at the time of his Presidency to address racism head-on and more adeptly, examples of how things have gotten better, stayed the same or gotten worse, detailed reasons why it is important to keep a keen eye on society and what is going on in the same when it comes to race, six differences between organizational types, the effect of the 1964 Civil Rights Act on today's society and a few other important topics. While laws and court decisions have done a lot, a culture shift of great magnitude will be required to truly put American society on the course it needs to be on and that shift will involve work from all corners of the country.


Brown vs. Board of Education is the Supreme Court of the United States decision that truly called "separate but equal" what it truly is and that is government-sanctioned racism. Indeed, separate schools for blacks and whites were encouraged and active even after the abolition of slavery and throughout the Jim Crow days. This continued on and until the Supreme Court had their say in the Brown decision. However, there was not an immediate "night and day" difference when that decision came down. First, the order came from the Brown case but it did not take effect right away. Indeed, it took a while for the schools to abide by the ruling and some jurisdictions (mostly in the south) did so only under coercion and fear of prosecution. Further, even if segregation is not supposedly sanctioned or allowed by the United States government and its laws, it still happens all of the time in neighborhoods, schools and businesses around the country. While a lot of that can be attributed to socioeconomic factors, there is still a wealth of information that suggests (or proves, according to whom one asks) that race relations and the equal status of all races is not nearly as close on the horizon of history as it could or should be given that half a century has passed since the Civil Rights Acts of the 1960's and more than one and a half centuries has passed since the abolition of slavery (Gale, 2016).

Indeed, Loden and Rosener explained in a book chapter they wrote that diversity is not a panacea to all. Just a few of the lagging and stubborn presumptions about differences and lack of commonality with all people leads to a couple of destructive and ill-minded presumptions. These include that otherness is a source of deficiency, that diversity poses a threat (rather than being an asset) to the effective operations of an organization, that problems with the dominant culture being spoken out loud is over-sensitivity, that members of all diverse groups want to and should become like the dominant group in power, that equal treatment means same treatment and that managing diversity just requires the changing of certain people rather than the organizational culture as a whole.
The authors go on to state that otherness being seen as a source of weakness or lack of superiority is clearly specious. However, it happens to be an idea that is pervasive even if it is not uttered out loud at all times (Loden & Rosener, 1991).

As far as what Kennedy could have done (or done better) given what was going on in his time and before his assassination, he actually did quite well in light of what he was up against in terms of racist sentiment and such. Even so, there are perhaps a few things he could have done better or in addition. These would include tying racial harmony with better business and job opportunities for all, less need for public assistance and poverty relief if everyone has a fair shake, a stronger case for women in the workplace and truly making sure that the Constitution was enforced as written rather than there having to be a consistent patchwork of amendments and other changes to entrench the idea that all people are created equal. Indeed, it was clear that this was not the real belief of at least some people (and certainly the dominant people of that day) when it came to blacks and women, at the very least (PBS, 2016).

Things that have gotten better over the years would be rights for minorities (African-Americans in particular), more proportional representation at colleges, more proportional representation in the workplace and more presence in the media sphere. Things that are perhaps roughly the same is the presence of racism with the dominant groups (white males in particular), the presence of infighting within racial minority groups, the overall presence of segregation in all parts of society even if it is not legally sanctioned anymore and the overall economic achievement of a good majority of racial minorities despite ostensible equal (or at least better) access over the years. Things that have gotten worse are overall trust for the police, overall trust in the handling of criminals, trust in how people in poverty (racial minorities in particular), feelings about refugees and feelings about undocumented immigrants. When it comes to the last category, three recommendations that should be employed and looked at include comprehensive immigration reform, effective handling of refugees (with a lot of focus needing to be put on those from the Middle East) and an educational program that deals with both of the prior ones while not forcing people to assimilate and be the "same" as everyone in the dominant culture. Also, a lot of the groups above tend to intersect. For example, a rising share of the black population in the United States are people that are not born in the United States (Pew, 2015).

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BBC. (2016). Migrant crisis: Migration to Europe explained in seven charts - BBC News. BBC News. Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

Gale. (2016). U.S. History in Context - Document. Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

History. (2016). Civil Rights Act - Black History - Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

Loden, M. & Rosener, J. (1991). Workforce America!. Homewood, Ill.: Business One Irwin.

MA. (2016). Diversity in the Workplace: Benefits, Challenges and Solutions. Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

PBS. (2016). Equality and the 14th Amendment - Constitution USA. PBS. Retrieved 6 September 2016, from

Pew. (2015). A Rising Share of the U.S. Black Population Is Foreign Born. Pew Research Center's Social & Demographic Trends Project. Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

Stahl, G., Bjorkman, I., & Morris, S. (2012). Handbook of research in international human resource management. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Pub.

WDN. (2016). Diversity. What it isn't.... Workforce Diversity Network. Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

WWL. (2016). Diversity and Disability - Work Without Limits. Retrieved 5 September 2016, from

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