The purpose of this research paper was to examine the effects, outcomes, and how to solve the problem of de facto segregation in schools, cities, towns, and in the United States in general. Most of the research was taken from databases and examples from articles and books were also used. Each of these factors was examined in detail and was taken from the many sources and backed up with quotes and information from other papers and books. After research, the solution that has the highest number of positive outcomes is to solve the problem of segregation in the neighborhoods surrounding these schools that contained “de facto segregation”. After this was explained, the problem in the schools was put into perspective and the outcomes of integrating neighborhoods and what it would look like in the schools. Lastly, both the positive and negative outcomes of this solution were discussed realistically.
DE FACTO SEGREGATION
The idea of segregation has been present in America for the last decade and has both resulted in positive and negative outcomes. Segregation has played a roll in many lives and has affected certain peoples lives deeply. Ever since the Civil Rights Act of 1964 every citizen born in the United States have the same laws regardless of skin color, religion, sex, or national origin. This means that segregated schools, bathrooms, workplaces, etc. are no longer allowed in the United States of America. Yet even with these laws in place, segregation still exists in the form of De Facto Segregation. This type of segregation is where people seperate themselves for others because of their own private reasons. For example, in public schools some students in a minority tend to separate themselves from the majority. So with this still existing, the United States is yet to fix the issue of true segregation. So the question needs to be asked, would changes to the everyday lives of American citizens get rid of De Facto Segregation more effectively than with the present laws and constitutions in place?
To understand how de facto segregation will be taken care of, the concept of this segregation needs to be understood. To start, de facto segregation in mostly referred to in racial terms. It is the segregation not by law that leaves towns, cities, and public schools separated and differ from each other racially. In the 1950s and 1960s the main reason for school segregation was the location of the schools and the neighborhoods surrounding them. The schools surrounded by a mostly white neighborhood tended to be white schools in today’s world and schools surrounded by a mostly black neighborhood ended up to be a majority black school. In the words of the United States Constitution’s 14th Amendment, “No State shall...deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law: nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws”(US Constitution). This means that any person should be given the same rights no matter skin color, gender, or ethnic background. Taking this into consideration, what is happening is not against any constitution but is happening because of past ways of US citizens and has transferred to today. “The high court said that, while the Fourteenth Amendment did not require school integration, it did not prohibit it”(Legal Dictionary). The reason for this segregation is not based on laws or policies, it is based on influences from citizens in a society. The most widely known reason for attempting to mix and segregate these schools was to get rid of the idea that white and black schools did not have equal education. These neighborhoods were the main reason that schools in today’s world are still segregated not by law, but by race, wealth, and by religion. De facto segregation can also happen in the form of wealth. For example, a white school might be comprised of both considerably wealthy families and families that are not so wealthy. (The kids at the school will tend to gravitate towards the kids that are similar to them which can lead to bullying of the other group and conflict. Another factor of this segregation could be blamed on the fact that some of these minority students can’t afford or are not able to travel to other schools near that are more fit for this student. “One of the disadvantages of education in a predominantly school is that it limits opportunity for interaction with classmates from diverse backgrounds”(Hoyt). In reaction to this statement, many people believe that it is impossible to properly integrate schools because of this and because of the segregation of the neighborhoods around the schools.
In order to take action against de facto segregation, action needs to be taken in areas surrounding schools, cities, and towns. Like mentioned earlier, one of the major causes for this segregation in schools in caused by the neighborhoods and population surrounding the schools. With this taken into mind, something needs to be done to the neighbors first in order to see change and see progress in these schools. So what can be done to these neighborhoods to solve the problem of segregation. First, neighborhoods need to be integrated as a whole. Mixing races, wealth groups, religions, etc. would not only lead to less discrimination, crime, and conflict, but would benefit schools in certain areas and progress would be made towards getting rid of this segregation. This would also benefit the neighborhood, cities, and local businesses/stores. There would as a result be less crime because of the mix of culture and influence from different types of people. Not only would the crime rate go down, but the number of conflicts would go down between people because people would be more understanding of each other and would be less discriminatory against each other, (Rose). Not only would the adults be influenced by this new integrated society, but kids would follow in parents and adults footsteps which would carry onto future generations. Even starting small in just one neighborhood in America would make a change and hopefully be passed onto to cities, towns, and even countries.
So now that it is understood that action needs to focused on neighbors first, action needs to be taken in these schools, cities, and towns. So assume that in a single neighborhood, that all of its residents have been integrated. Now these kids going to this school in the neighborhood are now interacting with each other and are now understanding of each other. The segregation in schools will go away naturally because of this integration of residents. The process of mixing becomes so much more of a possibility which sheds light on the school and the residents. It is a proven fact that students tend to learn better and understand better when schools are integrated and different cultures are implemented into one. In other words, ethnic diversity in schools leads to a better learning environment for the students. Mix this benefit with the benefits of integrating neighborhoods and the positives heavily outway the negatives. When learning gets better, the crime rate goes down, discrimination slowly fades, and the future for these children expand exponentially. Opportunities for these minorities go up and many jobs are now in reach for these students. Also, like stated earlier, this will pass onto future generations and there will be no such thing as a minority anymore. No such thing as discrimination, and no such thing as segregation in the United States of America.
Many believe that these actions are impossible and are out of reach for the people of America. In reality, it is one simple and logical step away from a different and much better America as a whole. It starts with, integrating neighborhoods which will have a domino effect on schools, cities, states, and even other countries. So the answer is very clear for American citizens. Changes in Americans everyday lives can indeed lead to getting rid of de facto segregation as a whole and can make the make the lives of Americans benefit majorly.
Green, Iii Preston Cary. “Can State Constitutional Provisions Eliminate De Facto Segregation in the Public Schools?” The Journal of Negro Education, vol. 68, no. 2, 1 Apr. 1999, pp. 138–153. JSTOR.
John, Nancy Hoyt St. “De Facto Segregation and Interracial Association in High School.”Sociology of Education, vol. 37, no. 4, 1 July 1964, pp. 326–344. JSTOR.
Hicks, Richard A. “California Suggests De Facto School Segregation Must End: Constitutional Law. State Action. Equal Protection. School Segregation.” Stanford Law Review, vol. 16, no. 2, 1 Mar. 1964, pp. 434–442. JSTOR.
Rose, Arnold M. “School Desegregation: A Sociologist's View.” Law & Society Review, vol. 2, no. 1, 1 Nov. 1967, pp. 125–140. JSTOR.
“De Facto Segregation - Definition, Examples, Cases, Processes.” Legal Dictionary, 25 June 2016.
1.) Green, Iii Preston Cary. “Can State Constitutional Provisions Eliminate De Facto Segregation in the Public Schools?” The Journal of Negro Education, vol. 68, no. 2, 1 Apr. 1999, pp. 138–153. JSTOR.
This article contains ways and possibilities that we can get rid of De Facto Segregation in public schools around America. Some evidence includes the violation of the 14th amendment and if state constitution provisions can be used to rid of this segregation. This article also examens past supreme court cases about the violation of the “equal protection clause” of the 14th amendment. Lastly it states opinions of people who are for and against the idea and belief of De Facto Segregation in the United States of America.
2.) John, Nancy Hoyt St. “De Facto Segregation and Interracial Association in High School.”Sociology of Education, vol. 37, no. 4, 1 July 1964, pp. 326–344. JSTOR.
This article contains information and facts from two different high schools in the northern United States where both schools contain ? of a black population and the conditions of the schools. It also talks about how elementary school segregations leads to high school segregation and how there are no ways to control it with the current laws in place.
3.) Hicks, Richard A. “California Suggests De Facto School Segregation Must End: Constitutional Law. State Action. Equal Protection. School Segregation.” Stanford Law Review, vol. 16, no. 2, 1 Mar. 1964, pp. 434–442. JSTOR.
In this article the author uses examples of certain schools and goes over the laws of segregation in America. From these examples the author explain how in public schools today, mostly white schools tend to contain more of this de facto segregation and that how colored people in the schools are inferior to the other students in the schools. This explains the reasons for the segregation in these schools.
4.) Rose, Arnold M. “School Desegregation: A Sociologist's View.” Law & Society Review, vol. 2, no. 1, 1 Nov. 1967, pp. 125–140. JSTOR.
In this article the author explains the past of segregation in the southern states of the United States. She explains that because of these past ways of life that de facto segregation will always be a thing and that because of the ways of schools today it is going to be a problem that will exist for generations and cannot be fixed.
5.) “De Facto Segregation - Definition, Examples, Cases, Processes.” Legal Dictionary, 25 June 2016.
In this article the author stats off by explaining the concept of De Facto Segregation in great detail and provides examples such as in schools and in cities. He also provides many solution and ideas to help fix the problem of segregation which comes back to the root of how segregation started.
6.) Fitzgerald, F.Scott. The Great Gatsby. Penguin Books, 1950
In The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald, there are many examples of racism and ideas of this type of segregation mention in the paper. There is the idea of wealth and poverty being separated in long island that suggests that segregation started in the early years of America and has since moved forward into the present day.
7.) “The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America.” Economic Policy Institute
In this very detailed book the author explains the origins of De Facto Segregation and how it has progressed over time. He includes court examples and includes many examples in this book. He also explains many acts and laws put in place that have and have not helped with segregation as a whole.
8.) Hemingway, Ernest. The Old Man and the Sea. Scribner, 1952.
In The Old Man and the Sea by Hemingway there are many examples that could be used to describe not the racial segregation, but the segregation by wealth and social class. In the book, all of the fisherman look down on Santiago and see him as a sorry excuse for a fisherman. In hindsight, these people making fun of him have more money and can fish for a living. This relates to the paper because it shows that even without laws segregating, this segregation still exists.