Racial Discrimination Kept Black People from Flying in Air Force

873 WordsJun 18, 20184 Pages
Colin Powell once observed that “a dream doesn’t become reality through magic, it takes sweat, determination, and hard work.” This principle is mirrored dramatically in the story of African Americans in aerospace history. The invention of the airplane in the first decade of the twentieth century sparked a revolution in modern technology. This new realm of powered flight rapidly altered modes of travel and recast the conduct of warfare. Aviation in the popular mind became associated with adventure and heroism. For African Americans, however, this exciting new realm of flying remained off-limits from the consequence of racial discrimination. Many African Americans displayed a keen interest in the new air age, but found themselves…show more content…
To generate some possible answers one idea is that racism is still at work. Major Tony Whiteside states that there are some personnel who share their discrimination but they are not a reflection of the whole image that is produced. He counters racism in the military by stating that the individual who is an “obstacle to overcome, there are ten other people who want to help black pilots,” in specific. However cases like this are not like this all the time. First Lieutenant Richard Jones exclaimed that he has actually been “embraced by his fellow comrades and instructors and that he has been treated in a respective manner.” So the least to say black pilots today are not facing racism in its entirety on becoming a pilot. They do not feel a sense of not being accepted into this prestigious community nor do they have any special pressure to prove themselves competent when they are challenged with a new task. Apparently, instructor pilots look at them in one way and that is by seeing if they are a good pilot. So if racism is not the problem then what is? The cause of this issue may be from a paradox at a higher level: the dearth supply of black officers in the Air Force and Navy. David Segal, a military sociologist, addresses this issue that it is very “touchy” to discuss because of the “difference in proportion to blacks enlisted and those who are officers”. Thus you cannot
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