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Word Count: 2,203
As we look back at the history of the United States one of our worst legacies is our poor treatment of minorities In our countrys earliest years we were importing and selling blacks into slavery an issue that tore our country in two Yet through trying and often tragic efforts minority leaders have elevated the legal status of blacks With the passing of the Civil Rights Act early this century the 1968 signing of the Fair Housing Act and the recent enactment of Affirmative Action it seemed as if African Americans would now have the same opportunities as white Americans However this is clearly not the case Through subverted and underhanded tactics many white Americans continue to limit the opportunities of minorities and because of the nature of these tactics the individual oppressed minorities are usually unaware of their existence The problem lies in the racism that is deeply rooted in the foundation of this country whose capitalist origins started in large slave owning plantations As a result a general attitude of minority inferiority has permeated our culture Because of these attitudes many white Americans in a position of authority segregate minorities and subsequently segregate themselves altogether eliminating contact between the two groups despite their relative proximity to one another These segregated areas are the poverty stricken inner cities inhabited by minorities and the wealthy suburbs inhabited by whites Because of the lack of interaction between the two groups white American attitudes toward minorities have changed from one of inferiority to one of fear and misunderstanding These attitudes take the form of what is now know as housing discrimination Housing discrimination refers to the illegal methods used by those in the real estate business to segregate minorities into certain living areas Housing discrimination is increasingly being seen as a problem and a major hindrance to the advancement of minorities in our country Recently many groups have been organized and are currently taking action to prevent
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