The Instigator
Pro (for)
6 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
6 Points

Racial discrimination is an issue in the US

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 11/19/2014 Category: Society
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,660 times Debate No: 65494
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (5)
Votes (2)




I am taking the position that racial prejudice/discrimination is a current issue in the U.S.

My opponent has the task of refuting this, claiming that racial equality is practiced and discrimination and prejudice are not widespread.

Good luck.


I gladly accept the instigator's challenge. I will do my best to prove that despite lingering traces of racism in the U.S., it is not a widepsread issue and should not be seen as such. Good luck!

Debate Round No. 1


Here are some facts:

-While African Americans comprise 13% of the US population and 14% of monthly drug users they are 37% of the people arrested for drug offenses " according to 2009 Congressional testimony by Marc Mauer of The Sentencing Project.

-The U.S. Sentencing Commission reported in March 2010 that in the federal system black offenders receive sentences that are 10% longer than white offenders for the same crimes.

-Even when released from prison, race continues to dominate. A study by Professor Devah Pager of the University of Wisconsin found that 17% of white job applicants with criminal records received call backs from employers while only 5% of black job applicants with criminal records received call backs.

-"Although many minorities are unprepared for college, whites who are just as unprepared are still presented with more opportunities and more likely to receive a bachelor's degree, the report says."

-The stress of racism actually causes physical harm.

-Facing racism has been shown to cause mental health issues. (Most studies reviewed were conducted in the U.S. with younger people aged 12-18.)

-Racist, particularly anti-black, attitudes are quite common.


I will start off with the topic of supposed racism involving crime.

This graph depicts the victimization of homicides according to race. As you can see, the number of black victims is significantly higher than the number of Caucasians. This may seem disturbing, but...

This graph depicts homicides by the race of the offender. The number of white on black homicides is actually the lowest of all, resting under 5%. The alarming number of black homicide victims is due to the high number of black on black incidents, which accounts for a little over 40% of the total.
Unless one was to consider intra-racial homicides as discrimination, I would not say that discrimination is an issue here.

Now with education.

The number of blacks graduating from high school has tripled to 84%.

The number of blacks receiving a college degree has quintupled to 20%

These charts show that blacks are receiving a higher education than they were before. If discrimination was an issue, there would be little to no change with these numbers, but as you can see, they are on a steady rise.

Next we will look at the state of poverty within the black community.

According to this graph, of those on the Needy Families List, only 32% of the black community is on welfare, which is highly contrary to popular belief.

A poll done by NBC and the Wall Street Journal shows that only 2% of the nation thinks that racial discrimination is a cause of the perceived poverty. Surprisingly, the majority opinion is that welfare is the biggest instigator of poverty, as it inhibits initiative.

Debate Round No. 2


Interestingly enough, I never cited homicide and poverty as examples of racism, so those are irrelevant. Nothing you said negates the examples I did provide.

Your education argument just boils down to "it's not as big of an issue as it used to be." But racism is still an issue.

So yeah. That may seem pretty short, but I pretty much covered everything.


"Interestingly enough, I never cited homicide and poverty as examples of racism, so those are irrelevant."

How are they irrelevant because you failed to cite them? May I mention Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin? Crime is an extremely relevant example in talks of discrimination.

"Your education argument just boils down to 'it's not as big of an issue as it used to be.'"

So? I stated when I accepted the challenge that "I will do my best to prove that despite lingering traces of racism in the U.S., it is not a widepsread issue." Hatred will always be around. It is impossible to eradicate it fully. But we have made progress in terms of allowing for more opportunities for blacks and in terms of accepting them as equal human beings. Those who believe otherwise are the ones who make racial discrimination a bigger issue than it really is. If we can simply drop the attempts to make race the factor in so many problems and just live together in peace, then we will never have to worry about discrimination!

Debate Round No. 3


If I had shown agreement with people who claim poverty and homicide to be examples of racism, you would have countered me. However, I did not. Showing two areas in which race is irrelevant does not negate the impact of racism in other ways.

And as for "lingering hatred," some people are still prejudiced toward people of Irish and Italian descent. However, there are still institutional barriers for minorities, and prejudice toward them is significantly prevalent (judging by the links I've provided earlier), unlike the lingering animosity toward those specific white groups.

Thus, I can conclude that racism exists on a larger scale than mere traces of behind-the-times beliefs.

And this isn't totally relevant, but racism isn't going to go away by not talking about it. People don't stop being racist because their hearts grow three sizes; racism fades when it becomes socially and institutionally unprofitable. The reality is that race is a factor in things.


ConservativeLiberal forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 4


Oh well. I was hoping for a continued debate.


ConservativeLiberal forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 5
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by ChandanB 2 years ago
Wait! And she is just 14?? Damn! Respect your intelligence :)
Posted by cheyennebodie 2 years ago
The congressional BLACK caucus. The BLACK panthers. Racism is alive in America.
Posted by LuciaB 2 years ago
@SCOTSKNIGHT12 Well, yeah, that's true. I don't want to make any relative statements about intensity in my country versus others. I just wanted a debate from an American perspectives.
Posted by SCOTSKNIGHT12 2 years ago
Well racial discrimination is big everywhere it is not just in the US
Posted by Adam2isback 2 years ago
It is (so I won't be debating), but it's certainly a lot better than the past. We've come a long way.
2 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 2 records.
Vote Placed by Hanspete 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:06 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct was very good, arguments some were dropped by Pro, sources Con used more, and Pro had a few minor minor mistakes, So I vote Pro.
Vote Placed by lannan13 2 years ago
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Total points awarded:60 
Reasons for voting decision: Forfeiture