Brent Staples On Ethnicity And Gender

950 Words Apr 21st, 2016 4 Pages
Like so many people, Brent Staples was judged based on ethnicity and gender. Brent Staples, an African American man, has been mistaken for a criminal countless times because of his race. The first time this happened, he scared a young white women when he turned the corner at night, and she ran off, convinced that he was “a mugger, a rapist, or worse.” Brent shares instances of people locking their car doors or crossing the street when he walked by, but he says he can’t blame them, as “young black males are drastically overrepresented among the perpetrators of… violence.” He discusses his childhood in Chester, Pennsylvania where there is “gang warfare, street knifings, and murders” that many of his friends and family have gone to prison or been killed over. He mentions two extreme situations in which he is mistaken for a burglar and tells the story of a journalist mistaken for the killer he was reporting on. Brent Staples makes it clear that these occurrences are continuous and common, and so he has had to make changes to accommodate for these terrified white people in public places by, for example, whistling classic music at night. The point he is trying to make with this article is that Caucasians have some common misconceptions about African Americans, often assuming they are all criminals, even though Brent has clearly illustrated himself as “one of the good boys.”
Grace Hsiang experienced a different form of discrimination called Intraracial discrimination. This type of…
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