Kansas Progress Institute

Ad Astra Per Aspera ~ To the Stars Through Difficulties

Characteristics/Examples of Institutional Racism

Posted on July 29, 2016

By David Burress

Isolated racist assaults can occur in any country. Of course there some racists out there.


But what is thoroughly disheartening is when, in an otherwise liberal University town:
1. A large white cop assaults a small middle class black woman for saying “could you please hurry up.”
2. Another large white cop then supports the first cop and tells the handcuffed, hurting woman that blacks are violent by nature.
3. As a result of this event being on a leaked videotape,* the Police Department does take action.
4. The action consists in sensitivity training for the cop–which is to say the department has discretely informed every racist cop that assaulting black women is understandable and the punishment will be purely symbolic.
5. There is no likelihood of any outside intervention to straighten out the department.
6. The society as a whole (as opposed to a few of the usual suspects) has no sense of outrage about this situation.


In other words, what is disheartening is an ingrained institutional police racism that this society is not at present making any serious effort to reverse–which reveals a deeper structural racism.


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