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Rights and Bytes: The Technology of Civil Rights Essay Sample

Rights and Bytes: The Technology of Civil Rights Pages
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When speaking of race, it has been a popular factor in our society for centuries. In Steve Olson’s essay, “The End of Race: Hawaii and the Mixing of Peoples”, he discusses human race and its genetic future. He also discusses how Hawaii has a lot of intermixed races and cultures. When dealing with race and what people consider themselves as you can refer it to covering. Kenji Yoshino discusses covering in his essay, “The New Civil Rights”. He states, “To cover is to tone down a disfavored identity to fit into the mainstream” (Yoshino, 479). He also discusses about our how our society is forming into one big group for our similarities rather than differences. People are “changing” their race to fit in for reasons such as higher employment and more opportunities. Using Yoshino’s and Olson’s discussions on covering and race, race is a hard thing to genetically determine so therefore a true race nowadays is hard to come by leaving the U.S with an “end of race”.

When determining race one usually goes by their parents or ancestors race. When a person is mixed with two races they either call themselves mixed or go by one of the races. Olson states, “Many people have considerable latitude in choosing their ethnic affiliations” (Olsen, 260). For example, when a person is filling out a ballot or application it will ask what their race is, if a mixed person puts down that they are Caucasian then they are covering. They are going towards the race that will most likely give them a better chance of getting the job because Caucasians have a higher employment rate. Another example is with a guy named Louis CK, in one of his comedies he talks about how being white is an advantage but in reality he is Mexican.

He looks white and has red hair so he can pass as one but that is not his race. He is covering because he can make others believe that he is white just because he looks it. Many people can be doing what Louis CK is doing, which is one not going by their true race. One of the examples Yoshino uses is when he discusses how famous people change their names to more American names to cover their ethnicity and have more success in our society (Yoshino, 480). Olson states, “The logical endpoint of this perspective is a world in which people are free to choose their ethnicity regardless of their ancestry” (Olson, 261). This quote supports the end of race because soon enough more people will be choosing their ethnicity without referring to their ancestry.

In the future one can think of how our country will be more diverse than it ever has. When we have these interracial marriages that start making families, it will eventually lead to more mixed races. Olson states, “ According to the 2000 census, one in twenty children under the age of eighteen in the United States is mixed, in that their parents fall into more than one racial category” (Olson, 252). The rate of mixed children is growing and this is affecting them to be able to trace back to their ancestry. Olson states, “But the social effects of intermarriage are much more immediate than are the biological effects” (Olson, 260). This is true because with intermarriage happening, ancestry is hard to trace back biologically. Our country now is already very diverse and without being able to biologically trace race then it could lead to an end of it.

Another thing one could think of is a world without race. There would be more equality and everybody would be in one massive group. Being in one group goes back to Yoshino’s idea of coming together. We all look the same inside of our bodies so why make it noticeable outside? We do not have to because we have come from a society where race does not matter anymore and everyone should be treated equal. We should all be referred to as Americans, not black, white, Native American, or Pacific Islander.

As time goes by, people are becoming more acceptable about race which can help diminish it. For the first time in history we have a black president, Barack Obama, who just got re-elected for his second term as the president. Also New York elected our first Asian American congresswoman, Grace Meng. This is a huge factor for how far we have come as Americans because we are more tolerable about other races. If people keep coming together and voting for these other races then in the future it is possible to have another president that is another race. Our country will get more and more diverse as years pass therefore it will cause different races to come together and to act like one huge race.

Another thing to think about is our generation does not seem to have a racial bias that our grandparents and parents may have because we are more exposed to it. Television shows include all races such as Blacks, Hispanics, and Asians. As we grow up watching these shows we do not recognize different races until we get older and most of us do not mind it then. Therefore our future generations will be more open to all races acknowledging people as one race possibly. This is another leading factor to the end of race.

Immigration is another leading factor to why our country will remain diverse and take in more ethnicities causing many more races. The U.S. already takes in immigrants from all around the world each day. With immigration we will have more interracial couples from different ethnicities and will therefore lead to more people with a mixed descent. Generation after generation will continue with these interracial couples and eventually everybody will be mixed. If everyone is mixed, then no one will have their true race to go by, so they will be covering their race causing an end to true race. As far as employment, if a person from a mixed descent is half white and half black then when they fill out an application they will most likely mark down that they are white. They will do this because white people have a higher employment rate. More people will be covering their race to get the job because they can pass as both races. Not just with employment, as Olson states, “Among many young people, dating someone from a different ethnic group is a social asset rather than liability, in part because of the doors it opens to other communities.”

He also states, “Many prospective students at the University of Hawaii simply mark “mixed” in describing their ethnicity on application forms, even if both parents have the same ethnic background” (Olson, 260). This quote explains that even kids from parents with the same ethnic background will say that they are mixed because they would be able to fit in with more groups of different races. Another thing Olson discusses in his essay is that ancestry or ethnicity cannot be detected through DNA. He states, “Our DNA is too tightly interconnected to use biology to justify what are essentially social distinctions” (Olson, 261). With that being said, we cannot not determine an ethnicity of a person because it is too hard to trace that far back. Olson brings up a good point when speaking of mitochondrial DNA, he states, “The only way for a person to have mitochondrial DNA from a woman who lived in Hawaii before the arrival of Captain Cook is for that person to have an unbroken line of grandmothers dating back to that woman. But because groups have mixed so much in Hawaii, mitochondrial lineages have become thoroughly tangled” (Olson, 258).

This quote is true because so many generations of family have passed down so you cannot get a mitochondrial DNA. When speaking of Yoshino’s essay and civil rights, they protect race, national origin, sex, religion, and disability (Yoshino, 480). We have civil rights to protect the people from discrimination in today’s society. Therefore we should all be treated equally even if we are from different ethnicities or a different race. With civil rights in place, an end to race will be easier because we are all equal and looked at the same way. Yoshino states, “The new civil rights must harness this universal impulse toward authenticity. That impulse should press us toward thinking of civil rights less in terms of groups than in terms of our common humanity” (Yoshino, 482).

This will diminish most racism and eventually bring our country to not differentiate races but to end it by coming together as a whole. In conclusion, the “end of race” is something to evaluate by the use of covering your race and Americans coming together. With people deciding which race they would like to be it is causing an extinction of their actual race. With more intermarriage, there will be a more diverse population than we have ever seen it before causing more mixed children from these descents. In the future, this will cause race to be an unreliable way to perceive someone because we cannot correctly trace back to their true ethnicity using DNA. “We are members of a single human family, the products of genetic necessity and chance, borne ceaselessly into an unknown future” (Olson, 262). Therefore, there could be an “end of race” due to Yoshino and Olson’s arguments and information they provide in their essays.

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