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American Affirmative Action Has Not Outlived Its Usefulness

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The guiding principle in the declaration of independence in America was liberty which was based on the fact that all men have been created equal and there should be no one superior to the other.  However this principle was not reflected in the daily life and was just a slogan which was perhaps advanced to claim independence. Today it is very clear that principle of equality has not been aligned to the freedom Americans claim to have.  Equality does not exist for women, blacks, racial minorities, and other Native Americans. Although the charter of entry to the federation was pegged on abolition of slavery and protection of individuals under the law, American blacks were still denied equal protection under the law in some of the states. School still remained racially segregated in other social life spheres like housing policy and in social behavior. But even with the movement of 1960s which were aimed at achieving more equality, the whites have maintained superiority and there are few numbers of blacks who reach influential positions in life. (Bobo, 2004)

Importance of affirmative action

 Affirmative action can be defined as systematic efforts which are aimed at improving the education and employment opportunities for minorities. It is very clear that there has been along history of discrimination of some races and groups.  The passing of civil rights Act, Voting Rights Act, Fair Housing Act, and other must have been influenced by the pursuit of affirmative action in a bid to achieve equality. (Bobo, 2004)

In what can be termed as laissez-faire racism, there has been a strong tendency to negatively stereotype African Americans and blame them for the large social economic gap between them and whites.  This has been seen as a new stage or a new face of racism in America in which racial oppression is less formal as a result of increased constitution enactment which has given all races equal rights.  Racial segregations may have been wiped off our physical life but in our emotions life it is very outright.  There are strong attitudes and beliefs on minority racial groups which portray them as inferior to the whites. (Bobo, 2004)

There is strong evidence which supports that American politics have been constructed on racial composition in the electoral districts which is reflected in all political spheres of Americans.  Candidates have been using racial appeals in order to mobilize the white voting public and no wonder we never have had any African American president.  The political power of whites also helps them to influence major social policies like the enactment of California’s property tax reduction initiative which substantially reduced resources for the government agencies. In what can be seen as realignment of political parties the Democratic Party has advanced for the civil rights and interest of the blacks.

Therefore we can say that from social and political life, African Americans have not enjoyed the privileges which are enjoyed by the white community.  They are not fully represented in the making of policies and their welfare is one well catered fro. This means the affirmative action has not lived is usefulness and it has more to achieve. It has to articulate for more equality in the society. (Bobo, 2004)


America was founded on the principles of freedom, liberty and equality. However due to the effects of slavery, African Americans and other minority groups have not been treated the same. In what can be termed as laissez-faire racism, there is a strong attitude on the inferiority of blacks. This is also reflected in our political arena. Blacks do not have the same representation as whites.  Therefore it has become important to continue pressing for affirmative action to achieve more equality.


 Bobo, L. (2004): Inequalities that endure. Sage

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