Race is just a term

As we have learned this week, there is way too much emphasis on the term, “race”. Race is just a word, we use it as a tactic to separate people who are different from ourselves, as well as to blame others for things. As we have seen recently in the news lately, there are so many people who are using the term race, as a way to group a large mass of people into one group, even though he or she may have completely different values. There is so much emphasis on the muslims relations to terrorism, when in reality, there are hundreds of thousands of Muslim men and women who have absolutely nothing to do with these vicious attacks shown constantly in the news.

As we engaged in the activity showing the ten facts about race, and we learned simple tactics  relating to how we can stop using race as a way to separate people. The very first tip stated that many many years ago, there was so such thing as separating people by color, and this made up word known as “race”. Everyone was simply human, and that was that. Another trait mentioned that we have not been around long enough to be anything other than human beings, and that is how we should treat each and every human being. We are all humans, regardless of color, size, height, location, and background.

In my health psychology class last semester we learned a lot about the difference in health between different groups of people, and they often separated these groups by color, and again this made up term, “race” each section would discuss how African Americans were often more overweight than European Americans, and Asian Americans contained the smallest percent of body fat. I just found it interesting to add that, what is the point? I mean I understand it is a fact, but why do we need to know that African Americans have higher blood pressure? After reading many articles throughout my life, I think it is valid that many African Americans ( NOT all) live with more stress than some white Americans. There are often so many people who are so quick to judge other people simply because they look different and unfortunately this often happens with African American men and women. My Health Psychology textbook also stated that mostly African Americans lack health insurance, and therefore, often put off attending doctor visits until it is too late, or very late in the process of their illness. There are numerous numbers of reasons as to why this particular group of people tend to lack healthcare and that is because there are often jobs that follow the trends  favoring white men and women, and therefore these men and women are forced to work at lower paying jobs that most definitely do not offer health care benefits.

As my post above mostly discussed African American men and women, I do not want people to think that I am stating that only African Americans are dealing with these issues, and I definitely do not want people to think I am stating that ALL African Americans are working low paid jobs or living in the conditions above, because I know that is NOT the case. I am simply just elaborating further on the information from previous information I have read.

 

 

Straub, Richard O. Health Psychology. New York City: Worth Publishers, 2014.

5 thoughts on “Race is just a term

  1. I agree with everything you stated. I have also learned a lot from other classes about how ethnicity affects ones health because of the disadvantages and stress of being minorities. What many people lack to understand is that certain health issues are not linked to someones skin color but to their lifestyle and also genetics. The most fascinating thing to think about is that the way to change this phenomenon is by equality, not by changing everyones skin color to be the same. We are very fortunate with our access to healthcare in the United States compared to other places, but still there are issues with hypertension because of stress. This is not only for African Americans but also for everyone else too, 1 in 3 Americans actually have high blood pressure.

  2. First off, I really enjoyed reading your blog post. Your thoughts were clear and they made a lot of sense. I think you bring up excellent points about how race and ethnicity (while they are social constructs) can have some serious real world repercussions. I really like the fact that you are bringing things you’ve learned in other classes into your understanding of this class. I think you’re absolutely right about the cultural factors that lead to physical responses in people. For instance, your example of African Americans not necessarily having access to health insurance because our culture favors white men and women in the types of jobs that provide healthcare. Culture can essentially decide someones fate (and of course that is a generalization of a statement, but hear me out) because it can make it harder for people to gain access to health promoting resources just because of their “race” which is a social construct that holds meaning within our culture. Not because of any “racial predisposition”. Your post really seemed to touch on that and I think its great that you talked about it. Nice job, and I hope you continue to draw comparisons from previous classes because it makes your writing very interesting to read.

  3. I really liked reading your post! I’m friends with a lot Muslim Americans and I completely agree with you that too often we connect the word Muslim with the word terrorist and it’s wrong. There are so many Muslims who are peaceful and just like the rest of us, its unfair to single out a few and have them represent the majority. I also like how you mentioned that many African Americans have more stress than the rest of us. Although it can be very stressful for anyone living in a lower socioeconomic status to pay for healthcare, healthy foods, and other necessities required to live a healthier life. For example, there are so many food deserts in Flint and Detroit where there aren’t any grocery stores for miles. There are only small convenience stores which have highly-processed foods that are unhealthy. This can be detrimental to the health of any individual, however, these food deserts are predominately in African American neighborhoods. Living in these food deserts often means that an individual is of a lower income which can mean problems with affording healthy food and healthcare, let alone housing and transportation. Overall your post was great and really had some good points!

  4. I agree with most of what you are saying, that we use the term race to define or categorize a certain group of people based on their similar traits. Back before race was a term I believe it was because people didn’t know people other than themselves existed. I don’t believe race started out to pin point certain people but mainly to categorize for example we can categorize different breeds of dogs by their color or size and fur type. I believe race is just used to group a certain demographic just like gender and religion. As far as you mentioning the certain health aspects correlated to certain races I think it is important to know these things just so you are more conscious about your health. Just like if your family has a high rate of cancer then you want to be screened regularly for that. In regards to your comment about people being people and we should all treat each other as human beings I completely agree with. All this chaos going on right now in the media of different races being treated differently needs to stop all lives matter no matter what color your skin is or who you choose to worship. It’s all about being to coexist with people different from you and learning and growing through out your life and not being discriminatory against anyone.

  5. I agree with everything you wrote. First of all race is just a word, in simple terms this is so true. You’re right, race is often used for an “excuse” for certain events. People can use race as a scapegoat and a way to blame others, and because of that it is so powerful. But it is sad that because of certain events and accusations, people become associated with a certain persona of themselves that simply is not true. I was also in health psychology last semester, and I did find a few of these statements puzzling as well. After going through some of these lectures it also has given me a little more clarity. Some of these things are true due to the conditions that the past and history, has put them in. This is true for many different types of people, all which have had unique histories.

Leave a Reply