During the 1930’s African Americans faced segregation and discrimination in nearly every area of their lives. In addition to the poverty that the rest of the country also faced, the colored people had to follow strict rules, and were not treated well. We can see some examples of the discrimination in the book To Kill a Mockingbird. In addition, we can also see that there is still a lot of segregation in America today. Racial Discrimination is a huge problem that began in the 1930’s and still exists today. The main thing that affected colored people living in the Great Depression were the Jim Crow Laws. These laws gave a “separate but equal” status to African Americans, which included the separation of public schools, public transportation, and restrooms.
This shows the segregation that African Americans had to face during the 1930’s. Even though the law was supposed to give them equality, they were not treated the same as the white people in America. Josh Gibson was a famous baseball player who competed in the Negro leagues from 1930-1941. He was affected by discrimination because he couldn’t play with or compete against white baseball players. This shows how all African Americans were treated during the time that the Jim Crow laws were in effect: like different kinds of people. The Jim Crow Laws made life difficult for people of color, because they were not treated with the respect that they had been promised. In the novel, To Kill a Mockingbird, we get a glimpse of what life was like for African Americans facing discrimination. On page 238, Reverend Sykes says to Jem, “I ain’t ever seen any jury decide in favor of a colored man over a white man.” This shows that the colored people were not treated the same as white people, and had a great disadvantage in many situations.
I think this is very unfair, but I can see that this was reality to the people of that time. On page 136, a woman from Calpurnia’s church says, “You ain’t got no business bringin’ white chillun here—they got their church, we got our’n.” This shows that it was not only the whites who discriminated against the colored, it was also the opposite. This was probably because they were very familiar with the Jim Crow laws, however this puts the issue into a different perspective. It is very evident that racial discrimination was very common in the 1930’s after reading To Kill a Mockingbird. Even though the Jim Crow laws are no longer in effect, we can still see segregation happing in America. In an article titled “American Schools Still Heavily Segregated By Race, Income: Civil Rights Project Report,” Emmeline Zhao writes about how schools in America are still very segregated, with around 80% of one race, when whites make up less than 10% of the student body.
This shows how even though there are no laws about separating races, many schools still segregate children by their race. It is interesting because most people think that people no longer discriminate races, but it is actually still a major issue. Nora Carver, in an article called “Contemporary Segregation in the South ‘Jimmy Crow is Alive and Well’”, writes, “Though modern laws and safeguards are in place to stop blatant racial discrimination America, the southern regions in particular, still maintain a standard of unspoken racial segregation.” This shows that even though it seems like segregation is gone in our schools, in some places, it is still strong. It is possible that because of discrimination problems in the past, people may still be upset, causing the effects to live on today. It is easy to see that even after the Jim Crow laws ended, racial discrimination still takes place in America.
Racial discrimination was a major social issue during the 1930’s. The Jim Crow laws caused segregation that affected all people of color. In the book To Kill and Mockingbird, there are many examples of what segregation was like during that time. Even though some people may think that racial segregation is over in America, we can see that it is still very present. Problems from the past continue to follow us today.