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Two contributing factors that did not help in realizing the dream were the war in Vietnam and the riots during the 1960’s. The two are related because the Vietnam War took valuable resources, in the form of money, from the social programs President Johnson pushed for initially when he first took office.  The frustration of the black communities were understandable; the infrastructures were crumbling, neighborhoods were overcrowded, and the progress they felt was coming was taking too long.   The war emphasized the fact that the government could spend money on a war that was not necessary, send troops (the same country that couldn’t send troops to defend African Americans during their peaceful marches) to a foreign land, and more importantly ask African Americans to lay down their lives for another war; and once they return not gain the respect they deserved.   

The riots  inevitable.  Frustrating leads to violence, unfortunately the violence led to the stigmatism of African Americans being a unruly spoiled group; always looking for a hand out from the government instead of looking for non existent jobs. The problem with the idea of being lazy was the fact jobs were not available to African Americans. If the jobs were not available, then how one fight the image of standing on the street corners waiting for the opportunities that didn’t exist. Sociologist published studies white individual consistently would be hired before an African American. The programs created by the U.S. government to alleviate these inequalities within American society often benefited white people as well. that are often associated with African Americans, such  benefited white people the most. If these programs actually had the necessary funding, then I think things would have been different today. Funny how we always fight wars and the African American community suffers as the U. S. always drains funds from their coffers; that could have been better served here in America.  I know I am getting off point, but as I read each chapter, I understand all the struggles more clearly and realize even more how far we still could have come if the decade of the 1970’s had not progressed the way it did. We lost true leadership and more importantly our way. We are educated, but we don’t the unity that today is being displayed by the Chinese, Indians (India), or even the Hispanic communities.  

How did affirmative action, reparations, and welfare influence the realignment of blacks and whites as for as their political preferences.  Affirmative action although it made sense also worked against white people as well. White people always advantages over African Americans, but some white people were penalized for being white.  If schools had to have quotas, then they were accepting students into intuitions that may not have the same credentials as the white student isn’t fair. The social question arises as to whether the white student had a better educations because he was from the suburbs compared the African American student from the inner city.   Affirmative action was the right thing to do, but the problem stems from the inequality of the school system for Blacks and Whites.

This issue allowed the Republicans to gather all disgruntled individuals under the flag of the Republicans and start to dismantle all the programs that Presidents Johnson and Roosevelt put into place to create a system of equality for all individuals, not just African Americans.   The system created to aid individuals, particularly African Americans, can also be a crutch. Strange that if African Americans in inner cities do not feel, justly, they have any real chance at the American Dream (Life Chances), then I can understand that they become dependent on a system that was supposed to pick them up.  Paying out reparations seems to be an impossible situation to figure out. Payments make not sense. I am African American, but nearly half American Indian, Do I receive half a check. If you have Caribbean blood in you, what portion of a reparation check do you receive? What if you parents earned their freedom, do you lose out or is the payments prorated. There will be individuals who will argue against reparations, stating the welfare is reparations. There is not way a dollar value can be placed on slavery. I think it is owed to us, but I would much rather see us as a people work the system that is place and elevate each other. The Ideas of Marcus Garvey, W.E.B Dubois, Martin Luther King, Malcolm X, and Booker T. Washington can be combined into one ideal to progress as a people.   We can educate, support each other by supporting black businesses (not exclusively), and just help each other at every turn. These people gave the blueprint, yet no one has taken the time to seize the moment and put it together as one concept to unite us a people. It can be done. Unfortunately the Chinese and Hispanics will surpass us in the next twenty years. 

The system is against us just as much as it was against them.  The opportunities have passed the last one hundred twenty years have been squanders in some way, but things have also gotten better.  White society doe want to keep the black man down, but I you dig deeper, then you will understand it is really the power elite who behind this type of thought.  All individuals are exploited, but on the bottom of the societal rating system is the African Americans, Haitians, and Africans. Integration of society is inevitable as the global economy is upon us.  It is not too late for us as people to take the hard work of those before us and find our niche before these global corporations finally do place us as a people into a caste system.