Ethnic structure in mystifies rather than clarifies the exact effects of racism in the American society in the 21st century. Blatant forms of discrimination and critical race projects have blatantly declined since the end of Jim Crow laws on race equality. Racial structure emphasizes on the powerful impact of inter-institutional dynamics, institutional resource inequities, and historical legacies that have led to inequality today. Bonilla-Silva in his book emphasizes social structures that promote racial inequality are inequitable distributions of social, political and economic goods and services, notwithstanding the play of macroeconomic, cultural and other factors.
According to Bonilla-Silva, the racial structure is well defined with race discrimination set over decades. Economic discrimination with most minority groups set below the middle-income capacity. In most cases especially now the current workforce majority is the minority Black, Latinos, and Asians. The racial structure defines how the society has is set and the differences in races regarding economic, social and political empowerment. According to Bonilla-Silva, this interpretation is viewed as normal for most people who do not quite understand color blind racism (Bonilla-Silva).
What is the racial ideology?
Bonilla-Silva analyzes racism with four key frames. About these frames, Bonilla Silva believes that these ideas are powerful and play a huge role in the production and reinforcement of status quo. Liberalism is one of the frames discussed in this book; he describes this ideology that the ruling group uses this framework to convince itself that its place in the social hierarchy is just and earned. The history of American liberalism is through this frame many atrocities committed to forming modern America. Liberalism embedded in the American people, it helps them define themselves, and no one knows how powerful they are in justifying racism or racial inequality (Bonilla-Silva).
In the simple sense, the liberalism ideology should be stripped of its glory. In the 21st, we still find people especially white people justifying the poise that brought independence to America. Most of the book discuss the exploitation and atrocities that minority groups such as the Black and Latin Americans went through. In actual sense liberalism points out how we are told us of the equal opportunities or gains made during the struggles of civil right movements to level the playing field. There is a belief in the society that racial discrimination is a matter of individual prejudice if it happens (Bonilla-Silva).
Naturalization frame allows whites to justify racial inequality as if it was inevitable. It is common when talking about social segregation which dates back in the history of economic disinvestment, redlining and discrimination exclusion of real estate practices. In the past race-based politics made it difficult for people of color to own homes or properties, thus segregated in one particular area. Naturalization frame describes the past inequities of past administration from the school segregation where funds were made available to white schools and shrunk in community-based schools. Such radicalized policies have structured the way of thinking for many white people with more citing a sense of entitlement (Bonilla-Silva).
Cultural racism frame is the way whites justify racial discrimination as a social reality. Adverse effects of racial discrimination in labor, housing, and educational markets are well documented from the 1960s. Bonilla-Silva implies that drawing from the arguments of the culture of poverty White have over time believed that racial discrimination is a cultural thing. Bonilla believed that racial indifference needs a broader discussion and be defined by culture is still a mark of social, political and economic inequality. In understanding, this cultural frame from Bonilla-Silva is that whites do not have to take responsibility for racial discrimination because they don't have to examine their status quo (Bonilla-Silva).
Minimization frame allows whites to ignore claims of racial inequality from individuals and communities of color. According to Bonilla accusing minorities of been too sensitive or using race as an excuse obscures the real incidents of racism and race-based discrimination. The minimization process allows oppressors to silence the voice of the oppressors using the term hypersensitive to define racism (Bonilla-Silva).
What is Bonilla-Silvas prediction for the future racial hierarchy in the US?
Bonilla-Silva predicts that the US seems to be moving toward a Latin American model of a race. What this means is that whites are set to become the minority but could try to remain as the majority through immigration laws or by broadening the idea of what white is. He believes that the Asians and Latinos are not assimilating, in the same way; Europeans did hundreds of years ago. In his prediction is the changing interface of racial indifference with porosity through marriage. There will be high chances of race mixing with more people wanting lighter children. As for racial inequality he believes, it will be worse than it was decades ago, with more blacks using the race card for their gain.
He predicts that similar to Latin America fashion that the American society divided into three groups forming the black-white continuum, a middle buffer group, a group that is still a racial or ethnic minority but has an opportunity to become whitened. In his prediction, America will comprise of white, honorary whites, and collective black groups. In his view, the race card will eventually be dropped or denied in full circumstances. Where class, not race statements will be considered making it even harder to place racial discrimination. The government will stop defining people by race thus civil rights laws will become harder to enforce and easily deny the existence of racism. Understanding racism in all aspects the hierarchy explained by Bonilla-Silva is based on his individual research on race discrimination (Bonilla-Silva).
What criticism do you have of Bonilla-Silvas theory of color-blind racism as an ideology supporting a racial hierarchy based on inequality?
Bonilla-Silva focuses on white racial attitudes as the main contribution of racial discrimination determinants. He emphasizes that they help sustain structural discrimination focusing on the behavior of racial and ethnic minorities. Bonilla-Silva tries to rationalize racial discrimination using the racial hierarchy even with this we cannot refute the discrimination of minorities by whites. In the real world, Latin and Asian Americans make the largest group of employed persons in the population. Income inequality in this set of people makes it hard to relate to the result of racial hierarchy prediction (Michael Omi).
In his book, he forgets the impacts of the white elites, who may possess color blind racist attitudes. As a result, they may implement a decision that is disproportional. The fact that the 2008 elections Obama is elected against his competitor is a foreseen realization of the predictions in his book. In general racial inequity or color, blind racism is seemingly on the rise. Black enthusiasts groups are forming with anti-white slogans in America. Contrary to this the numbers of interracial marriages continue to soar higher with more people intent on creating better future for their children. In his book, he is enthusiastic that color blind racism is an attitude that can quickly change. Racial attitude can be modified through white people commitment and education to improve the functioning of color-blind racism in American society.
What is your evidentiary basis for this criticism?
It is through his works we learn the correlation between race and American politics. With the focus on the 2008 elections, he characterizes Senator Barrack Obama as evidence of America's shift towards Latin Americanization. A bi-racial himself he won over the majority of votes especially from the minority groups, as an anecdote the campaign did not feature any race related issues or policies in the limelight. Apart from that fact, even from avoiding such disproportionate matters, the racial relationship that is endearing to many voters was already present. Using the example of President Barrack Obama we see that he participated heavily in racialist policies or political practices that downplay race. The political analyst points out that this was strategically used to woo white voters in America, which very well succeeded (Michael Omi).
In respect to this, there are high chances of racial and ethnic minorities becoming demobilized as political agendas. As he warns of this in his book, it is important to obliterate the redress of race specific issues, it is important, therefore, to have legitimate political perspectives that draw on racial and ethnic discrimination. In his arguments on racial structure and ideologies, the fact that it is evident in the 21st century is something that needs addressing. The predictions set in this book on the changes in America society regarding race are critical facts foreseen in all aspects political, social and even economic. More so, it's important to understand where racial discrimination set in for future generations to learn and moved away from it (Bonilla-Silva).
BIBLIOGRAPHY \l 1033 Bonilla-Silva, Eduardo. Racism without Racists: Color-Blind Racism and the Persistence of Racial Inequality in America. Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2013.
Michael Omi, Howard Winant. Racial Formation in the United States. Routledge, 2014.
If you are the original author of this essay and no longer wish to have it published on the SuperbGrade website, please click below to request its removal: