The color of someone’s skin is not the ultimate factor in determining whether a person can be a victim of racial prejudice but having fair skin has clearly made it easier for certain ethnic minorities, such as the Irish, to assimilate into mainstream America. But that does not come as easily to people of color for obvious reasons. Due to slavery, African-Americans specifically have historically been targets of mistreatment. Using patrollers to seize runaway slaves pioneered formal police forces, especially in the South. Even after the Civil Rights Act of 1964 was passed this devastating legacy continued to play a role in policing. For some, police harassment simply meant racial profiling, but for others it meant being beaten or murdered by those hired to protect and serve. The issue is whether police in the 21st century still believe subconsciously or not that their duty is to protect white people from people of color, specifically African-Americans. That mindset would explain why a disproportionately high numbers of black people are killed, beaten, and arrested by police in major urban cities of America, and why in 2014 more black people died at the hands of police than in the September 11 terrorist attacks.



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