Facts have repeatedly proved the argument made by Derek Bell, an American critical race theorist, that racism is a permanent part of the American landscape.
In May this year, after the death of an African American George Floyd, who died after being pinned down by a white officer, an anti-racism movement represented by Black Lives Matter swept the U.S.
Black Lives Matter becomes the largest movement in U.S. history, according to American scholars.
Racial discrimination in the U.S. has attracted much international attention and drawn wide criticism from the international community.
Fifty-four African countries have jointly submitted a draft resolution to the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council, urging the council to hold an inquiry into issues such as systemic racial discrimination and police brutality in law enforcement in the U.S. and other countries, so as to protect the rights of people of African descent.
South African ruling party African National Congress, the African Union Commission and the UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination all issued statements to condemn racial discrimination and racism.
“It carried with it an all too painful familiarity, and an ugly reminder,” Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo condemned George Floyd’s death.
Sadik Arslan, Turkey’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Office in Geneva, sharply pointed out that the American people’s protests revealed deep cracks in American society that lasted for centuries.
To add insult to injury, the COVID-19 pandemic has magnified the systemic racial discrimination in the U.S.
The Financial Times, a British newspaper, pointed out that nothing could better display the difference in skin color in the United States than the life and death stories in the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown.
According to data released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in June, the COVID-19 infection and death rates for African Americans and Latinos were five times and four times that of their white peers, respectively.
Data released by the U.S. Department of Labor in November also showed a “racial gap” as unemployment rates in October hit 10.8 percent for African-Americans, 8.8 percent for Latinos, and 6 percent for Whites.
The severe impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on African Americans revealed the fact that they have been marginalized, and it’s important to put an end to the damage caused by the deep-rooted racial discrimination, said Michelle Bachelet, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, during the 45th regular session of the UN Human Rights Council.
“Bad apples come from rotten trees,” said a research from the Brookings Institution, a U.S. think tank. The expression summarizing the root cause of frequent incidents of racism in the U.S has spread far and wide recently.
Numerous facts proved that systematic racism in the U.S. leads to inequalities in many areas such as wealth, health, criminal punishments, justice, employment, housing, political participation, and education.
Former U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson admitted that if the term systematic racism is defined broadly enough, one could say there is systematic racism across every institution in America.
Centuries of racist policy, both explicit and implicit, have left black Americans in the dust, physically, emotionally and economically, said an article published by Time magazine.
The article added that the U.S. may think it has brushed chattel slavery into the dustbin of history after the Civil War, but embers still burn today and systemic racism also found its way, more insidiously, into the institutions many Americans revere and seek to safeguard.
While the American society may reflect on racism sometimes, it has constantly failed to take concrete actions to combat racism.
In recent years, white supremacy in the U.S. has shown a resurgence trend. Since the beginning of this year, about 500 incidents of white supremacists attacking anti-racism protesters have taken place in the country.
According to data from the Anti-Defamation League, deaths caused by racism-related extremist activities accounted for 20 percent of that from terrorism in the U.S. in 2016. Two years later, the figure rose to 98 percent.
Ironically, after the death of George Floyd, Jacob Blake, an African American man in Wisconsin, and Breonna Taylor, a black woman in Kentucky, had similar experiences.
For Black people in the United States, the domestic legal system has utterly failed to acknowledge and confront the racial injustice and discrimination, said Tendayi Achiume, the UN Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of racism, racial discrimination, xenophobia and related intolerance.
The U.S. society is riddled with chaos and uncertainty, and its structural problems accumulated over the years cannot be resolved overnight. Who should be held accountable for America’s governance failure? That’s a question hunting the country.
People at the bottom of U.S. society know that the idea that all men are created equal in the Declaration of Independence has nothing to do with them. They may also sense helplessness from former U.S. President Barack Obama’s remarks when he said that for millions of Americans, being treated differently on account of race is tragically, painfully, maddeningly “normal.”