Tanya Golash-Boza, Race and Racisms: A Critical Approach
Week 12 Memo
Tanya Golash-Boza, Race and Racisms: A Critical Approach – Second Edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press. 2015.
In the chapter, Income, and labor market inequality, Golash-Boza Discusses the fact that the United States has become one of the unequal Western nations. The disparity has been propagated within the lines of race and gender such that African Americans and the Latinx get considerably minimal wages than the white racial group (Golash-Boza, 2015, 103). Racial inequality is not happening in terms of income levels but also within the labor market. Asians have the highest median earnings than whites, blacks, and Latinx in that respective order. Nonetheless, for as long as one can remember, white workers’ median income has been higher than that of black workers creating an earnings gap with many explanations attached to it.
In terms of gender, a wage gap does exist between men and women in the country’s labor market such that a woman will earn one average of 83 cents hourly for every dollar that a man earns. Furthermore, the differences in earnings by gender and also across the racial and ethnic groups are strikingly evident. The white woman will earn 81 cents for every dollar that a white man earns (Golash-Boza, 2015, 183). Nonetheless, the black woman makes only 65 cents for every dollar made by a white man, while the Latina woman will make only 58 cents (Golash-Boza, 2015, 184). From this analysis, it is clear that when analyzing racial inequality within the labor market while not considering gender, one will not get an accurate picture.
The differences in the income and labor market across racial lines demonstrate that discrimination is still present despite the affirmative actions and establishment of anti-discrimination laws and lawsuits. The author gives fundamental reasons why the discrimination persists, which are reasons I agree to. One of them is that it is very challenging to legislate discrimination away. Some employers are unconsciously discriminating the nonwhites and women (Golash-Boza, 2015, 196). The American society is ingrained with racial ideologies that its people now use to create individual perceptions. Entrenched stereotypes and implicit biases will have a white hiring manager unknowingly consider himself and other white people natural leaders. The nonwhites will take more effort to fit into such positions (Golash-Boza, 2015, 200). He could easily presume that the African American man is irresponsible and the Latinx individual can never be professional. These perceptions will significantly influence the persons hired into their working environment, making it challenging to end labor market discrimination. This will only happen when the racial stereotypes are eliminated.
Another reason for the earnings gap is the structural growth happening in particular industries and the construction happening in other industries resulting from global economic forces beyond the control of the country’s government. A government can choose to provide training programs to instill people with updated skills to fit them into the emerging fields. Notably, if these training programs can ensure that the trainees learn together without racial segregation, it becomes easier to falsify established racial stereotypes and reduce the existing racial disparities. Additionally, the entrenched inequality, patriarchy, and racial divisions within the labor market and small-business market will make it challenging to fight racial inequality. These matters make the United States increasingly unequal since the reasons for their existence are embedded in the country’s history and lifeline.
During this reading, the statistics presented were quite interesting and thought-provoking. It is incredibly intriguing that race and gender still determine the remuneration level a person deserves despite people working similar jobs. Notably, Goulash-Boza makes sense in stating that this has been the outcome of the constructed stereotypes within the society that have ended up harming even individuals’ income levels. Nonetheless, not everything is lost since these racial groups’ empowerment should help increase awareness on why equitable income levels and treatment in the labor market are necessary. From a young age, individuals need to have equal access to educational opportunities. Training and even economic opportunities will see them take part in the economic development of their countries. Racial discrimination hence becomes a thing of the past as the impact of these segregated groups is felt.