2 pages/≈550 words
Stereotypes of Racial, Ethnic, and Sexual Orientation Minorities (Essay Sample)
For this Discussion, you select a current news story from print or media(no more than 5 years old) that involves a crime committed against an individual or group related to racial and ethnic, and/or sexual orientation stereotypes.
Stereotypes of Racial and Ethnic Minorities
Stereotypes of Racial and Ethnic Minorities
Police brutality against black people has been the subject of many protests in the US in the recent past. Notable cases that have been in the headlines involve the murders of Michael Brown and Eric Garner. Most of the murders against members of the black community show racial bias are prevalent in the American policing. One news story showing racial stereotype is that of the murder of Walter Scott. A story by the New York Times (2015) detail how an unarmed black man, Mr. Scott was shot by a white police officer, Michael Slager.
According to the story, Mr. Slager was found guilty after a video taken by a bystander showed him shooting an unarmed black person running away. If the bystander had not taken the video, the case would have been forgotten as Mr. Slager had given a different story. Mr. Slager’s initial claim was that he shot Mr. Scott after he wrestled away his gun. Police reports also showed that officers had tried to deliver first aid and perform CPR on Mr. Scott, but the video showed otherwise. The video shows Mr. Slagger firing eight times at Mr. Scott who was fleeing. The officer is also seen dropping something close to Mr. Scott’s body. There was also no CPR performed, and the officers were in no rush to help the victim. Were it not for the video, Mr. Slager would have gotten away with the murder of an unarmed black person.
This story clearly shows a white police officer killing a black person without cause. The officer initially claims that he feared for his life. The video shows that Mr. Slager’s life was not in imminent danger given that Mr. Scoot was unarmed and was running away. The racial stereotype may have thus contributed to the murder. The officer may have assumed that Mr. Scott posed a significant threat. As noted by Blinder (2016), the officer confesses that “total fear” had consumed him before opening fire to kill Mr. Scott. The officer also thought that he was “running for some reason.” This clearly shows that the black man is perceived to be dangerous even if he is unarmed. Therefore, there may be the existence of racial stereotyping in the murder of Mr. Scott. Stereotypes about black people may have influenced Slager’s decision to open fire and kill Mr. Scott.
A strategy that could reduce stereotypes that contribute to the victimization of racial and ethnic minorities is anti-bias training. Police often hold unconscious biases against minorities and training could be instrumental towards reducing them. The aim of such training is to improve the judgment of officers in situations they feel threatened. An example of an anti-bias training program is the Fair and Impartial Policing. The program incorporates group discussions and role-playing (Carey & Goode, 2016). The program recognizes that bias exists and it aims to reduce it among police officers in the country. Hundreds of police departments in the country have already adopted the training program (Carey & Goode, 2016). As an example of...
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