Definition of Racism
Racism is defined by Oxford as “prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against a person or people on the basis of their membership in a particular racial or ethnic group, typically one that is a minority or marginalized.”
It is also called racialism. These biases create three general beliefs, such as Human beings may actually be split into different biological categories or “races”. Certain physical traits have a relationship with personality types, level of intelligence, and morality. One or multiple races are in some way dominant or superior to others.
Multiple scientific and academic bodies have concluded that the idea of “race” having any biological influence is unfounded. Modern society's idea of “race” was invented but bears no actual weight.
History of Racism
While many countries have a long and continuing relationship with racism, the United States’ history is rooted in it. Since its development, the country’s laws, practices, beliefs, attitudes, and actions have discriminated against various groups based on either race or ethnicity.
Generally, white European Americans, specifically Anglo-Saxon Protestants, have ample access to education, voting rights, land acquisition, immigration, and criminal procedure privileges while denying those same rights to others.
Different examples of this lie in things like the genocides, massacres, and forced removal of Native Americans, African Americans being enslaved until 1865 and facing continual political and legislative barriers, Japanese Americans in internment camps from 1942 to 1945, the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the forced migration of Mexicans between 1929 and 1939.
Cultural prejudices have been or still are present against almost every cultural or ethnic faction, excluding the white Anglo-Saxon Protestants who mostly identify as having European descent.
According to a 2019 Pew Research Survey, about 8 out of 10 respondents say that Americans have not done enough to give Black people equal rights as white people. The majority of white, Black, and Hispanic Americans have negative views of the state of race relations in the U.S., saying that race relations are bad and may be getting worse. Additionally, about 59% of adults believe being white helps a person get ahead in our country these days.
Least Racist States
As the United States thinks about how it can improve race relations in the future, it’s crucial to look at what the country has achieved so far. Below are the ten states that have made the most racial progress in the U.S. The data, collected from Wallethub, measures the gaps between Black and white people across 21 key indicators for equality and integration, including voter turnout and standardized test scores, in four categories:
- Employment & Wealth
- Social & Civic Engagement
Arizona The overall score of Arizona’s racial integration is 75.16. While having the highest overall score, Arizona ranks fifth for Employment & Wealth and ninth for Education. Under Employment & Wealth, Arizona has the third-lowest median annual income gap and the fifth-lowest labor-force participation rate gap. Under Education, Arizona is tied for the lowest gap in the percentage of adults with at least a high school diploma.
Hawaii Hawaii has the second-highest racial integration with a score of 74.48. It ranks second for Employment & Wealth and first for Social & Civic Engagement. Hawaii ranks first among all states for the lowest median annual income gap, the lowest labor-force participation rate gap, and the lowest poverty rate gap.
Texas Texas ranks third overall for racial integration, with a score of 74.08. Texas ranks sixth for Employment & Wealth, fifth for Education, and thirteenth for Health. Texas is tied for the lowest gap in the percentage of adults (25 years old and over) with at least a high school diploma and ranks fourth for the lowest poverty gap.
Montana Montana is ranked fourth for racial integration with a 73.95 score. Montana ranks fifth for Education and fourth for both Social & Civic Engagement and Employment & Wealth. Montana’s median annual income gap and poverty rate gap are the second-lowest. Montana is tied for the lowest labor-force participation gap and the gap in the percentage of adults with at least a Bachelor’s among all states.
Maryland Maryland’s racial integration score is 72.84, ranking seventh for Employment & Wealth, eleventh for Social & Civic Engagement, and sixth for health. Maryland has the fifth-lowest poverty rate gap, is tied for the lowest voter turnout gap, and has the second lowest infant-mortality rate gap.
New Mexico New Mexico’s overall racial integration score is 72.80. The state ranks third for Employment & Wealth, second for Social & Civic Engagement, and third for Education. New Mexico tied first for the lowest gap in the percentage of adults with at least a high school diploma. New Mexico came in fourth for the lowest median annual income gap, the lowest unemployment rate gap, and the lowest standardized-test scores gap, but it came in fifth for the lowest gap in the percentage of adults (25 years old and over) with at least a Bachelor’s degree.
Wyoming Wyoming’s overall score is 72.77, ranking first for Education and third for Social & Civic Engagement. Wyoming has the third-lowest poverty rate gap and is tied in first for the lowest gap in the percentage of adults with at least a Bachelor’s degree.
Alaska The overall score of Alaska is 72.77. They rank first for Employment & Wealth and sixth for Social & Civic Engagement. Alaska came in first for the lowest unemployment rate gap and tied first for the lowest labor-force participation gap.
Washington Washington state’s overall score for racial integration is 72.43. They rank fifth in health, but thirteenth in Emplotment & Wealth, fourteenth in Education, and fourteenth in Social & Civic Engagement.