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Essays on Segregation

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Brief overview
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Main Ideas

Segregation is a systematic separation of people into ethnic groups such as race in daily life. Racial segregation amounts to the crime of apartheid as well as a crime against humanity under the International Criminal Court’ Statute. It involves special race separation, as well as mandatory use of different institutions like hospitals and schools based on the person’s race. It may be applied to eating at restaurants, using public toilets, and even drinking from water fountains.

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Origin

In every multiracial community in the world at any moment there has been some form of racial segregation. Only a small number of areas with extensive interracial marriages are exempt from it, though there’s still some social stratification there. The origin of racial segregation dates back to Imperial China. In the 779 the Tang dynasty had an edict that forced Uydhurs to wear ethnic dresses, prevented them from marrying the Chinese females, etc.

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Cause

Racial segregation is often the cause of discrimination. In the US, for example, it was mandated by law in selected states and enforced along with prohibitions against interracial marriage. Nowadays, such laws no longer exist in the US, though they are still very real in some developing countries.

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Outcome

Racial segregation has been outlawed in many countries around the world. However, it still exists de facto through different social norms. It is maintained by means such as hiring discrimination, rental and sale of housing, etc. We have come a long way since apartheid, but segregation based on race is still very present in the world.

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Key Quotes

"Segregation is the act by which a (natural or legal) person separates other persons on the basis of one of the enumerated grounds without an objective and reasonable justification, in conformity with the proposed definition of discrimination.”- European Commission against Racism and Intolerance The legal battle against segregation is won, but the community battle goes on. - Dorothy Day

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Interesting Facts

Apartheid schools still exist on some level, mostly because of finances. White families are often in a better financial situation to move to school districts with better educational opportunities for their children. As a result, there are schools in which students of color make up to 99% of the population, and those schools are in poor districts and are understaffed and underfunded. Up until 2003, a sixth of all black students were educated in such schools. It wasn’t until 2014 that a Georgia school district held the first racially integrated prom. It was the John Crow Laws that made it legally acceptable to force African Americans to use separate transportation, schools, water fountains, entrances, and even toilets than white Americans. In 1953, a young girl wasn’t allowed to go to a white school in Topeka, Kansas, which prompted her parents to sue the school. They won a historic case called the Brown vs. Board of Education.

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