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Education, English

Racial Intolerance In US Politics And Society

Tolerance is difficult to achieve, as it requires self-control, acceptance of opposition, and rationalization of events and opposition with an unbiased approach. Therefore, there have been many cases of intolerance around the globe at individual levels and state levels. There have been events where an offense and opposition has caused decades of war and unjust treatment of people.

The black history of slavery and injustices is just a single example of racial intolerance. The injustices due to racial intolerance have caused heart-trenching discriminations on the populations of people around the globe. However, the paper will focus on racial intolerance in the history of the United States, encompassing the black history in America, driving on the two documents, the Crucible and the speech by Martin Luther King on the Vietnam War. Both the documents, the speech “Beyond Vietnam” and The Crucible, present racial intolerance and the different strategies it is manifested, such as in the form of war and removing attention from the issues inside the state and through blame. However, racial intolerance is not new; it is embedded in US politics and society.

Racial intolerance in the United States is a dominant phenomenon, and the speech “Beyond Vietnam” by Martin Luther King highlights the US racial intolerance towards the poor and Vietnamese. In his speech, King focuses on the intolerance of the US towards communist ideologies and the Vietnamese. The speech criticizes the American Government for condemning the Vietnamese, especially the poor Vietnamese, for supporting a cause that is costing billions of money, thousands of lives and huge arms. King criticizes that fighting for justice in other people’s land when thousands of blacks are suffering in the United States is hypocrisy. It highlights the deaths of thousands of Vietnamese civilians, including old women and children, and demands to end the war. The speech focuses on the intolerance of the US towards poor people and distinct ideologies and black people. The speech draws the attention of the people towards racial segregation in America instead of trying to solve the problems of the world, especially when help is not needed. It criticizes the military assistance, lack of transparency and the bombing in Vietnam, which are related to racial intolerance. The intolerance of dissent and new ideologies that are not in opposition to the American views. It criticizes the willingness of the US to be involved in solving the problems of the world when the people of the US are suffering injustices. Although the references to racial intolerance in the speech are subtle and the emphasis on the Vietnam War is focused, it suggests the discrimination and intolerance of the US policies towards the poor in the US and outside of the US are clearly emphasized.

Similarly, the Crucible by author Miller presents racial intolerance as Abigail blames Tituba, a slave girl, for being a witch. The story shows the blame games that people begin if confronted by the authorities for their wrongdoings. The play presents such a blame game where the women start blaming Tituba first and each other later to get free of punishment. The play begins when the Revered Parris, father of Betty, finds Betty and Abigail dancing with the Tituba. To be absolved from the blame for staining the reputation of her uncle, Abigail lies about the witchcraft. She blames Tituba and others for communing with the devil. The blame game ends when John is hanged for a crime he never committed. It discusses the issue of the races and making someone a scapegoat to save oneself. The novel implies that many of the slaves and the black people are blamed for crimes that they did not commit, and they are blamed and convicted for them. It also stresses the racial intolerance in the society. The discriminatory laws, the blame for being communist and for different ideologies are presented in The Crucible.

Both of the documents present the ideological intolerance that is embedded in the US’s history. Both documents show intolerance towards the communist ideology through the allegory of witchcraft to symbolize the questioning of the people for their political affiliations. However, the political intolerance is not only restricted to the people with the communist political views. It is extended to the minorities and the black people. Black people especially have suffered due to slavery, discriminatory laws that proved a lack of tolerance towards certain groups and social discrimination. The intolerance persists in today’s society, but it is more prevalent on social levels now. The blacks suffered physical barriers as they were considered lesser human beings due to their skin colour. They suffered Jim Crow laws, due to which they were not allowed to be mixed with white people. Later, discriminatory laws were enacted to focus and put the blame on blacks for the evils in society. Several laws, such as Slave laws (legalized slavery), Racial restrictions in the seventeenth century (to restrict free and other slaves), slave labour, the Jim Crow Laws, Antidrug wars and the war on crime. The earlier laws specified and discriminated against people of colour openly and dehumanized them. The laws justified slavery, taking benefits from the slaves without payments and giving the whites rights over the lives of their slaves. The laws improved with time, and the blacks were considered secondary citizens with voting rights. Then, in the twentieth century, there were other laws such as Jim Crow and New Deal segregating and ripping the blacks of job opportunities. However, with the civil rights movement, the blatant discrimination subsided, and new laws, such as the war on drugs and the war on crimes, were introduced. Although these laws seem to be just, the black and other minority groups suffered because of them. As the drugs and crimes were labelled punitive, job opportunities were not equally introduced, and people of colour were affected. The blacks were arrested in mass, and prisons were built to accommodate the disproportional black prisoners. The seemingly just and fair laws targeted certain minority groups. Moreover, the courts became stricter in responding to black crimes and showed leniency for similar white crimes. Hence, the current discrimination in jobs and health care is another form of racial intolerance embedded in the US society. Additionally, the attention has diverted from the black population to the Muslims after 9/11, and the US society and government have become intolerant towards certain groups throughout history.

To conclude, racial intolerance is embedded in the society of the US, and the government has perpetrated and ignited the issues even further. Regardless of the ideological differences, ethnic, religious and cultural differences, the US seems to be intolerant to certain groups at various times. The lack of tolerance has become part of US politics since the beginning in the form of anti-black laws to new anti-Muslim laws. The US government seems to lack tolerance for opposing ideologies, whether they are communist, liberal or religious. The US responds to the differing ideologies with violence and suppression, using its military or economic powers to influence the world. However, the lack of tolerance is bad for the reputation of the US, and it is unacceptable to the globalized world as it threatens sovereignty, free speech, and human rights and inflicts violence on the population within the country and outside of the country, as pointed out in the “Beyond Vietnam” and the Crucibles.

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