II. Systematic racial discrimination aggravates social split

The existing problems of racial discrimination in the United States have not been eased, but racial relations continue to worsen. Social antagonism has been intensified and racial conflicts frequently occurred.

Systematic racial discrimination exists in law enforcement and judicial organs. According to the website of the Huffingtong Post on November 18, 2017, a report of the U.S. Sentencing Commission released in November said that black male offenders received sentences on average of 19.1 percent longer than those of “similarly situated” white male offenders. According to the study from the National Registry of Exonerations, which was released on March 7, 2017, and examined cases from 1989 to October 2016, African Americans are far more likely to be wrongfully convicted of crimes such as murder, sexual assault and illegal drug activity than white people. Of the 1,900 defendants convicted of crimes and later exonerated, 47 percent were African Americans -- three times their representation in the population (www.aljazeera.com, March 8, 2017). According to a report by the Stanford Open Policing Project released on June 19, 2017, based on analysis of more than 60 million police stops in 20 states, black and Latino drivers face a double standard and police require far less suspicion to search them than their white counterparts. Black and Latino drivers are about twice as likely to be searched compared with whites. After being stopped, black and Latino drivers are ticketed, searched and arrested more often than whites. For example, when pulled over for speeding, black drivers are 20 percent more likely than whites and Latino drivers 30 percent more likely than whites to be ticketed (www.latimes.com, June 19, 2017). According to statistics by the Mapping Police Violence released at its website on January 1, 2018, the U.S. police have killed 1,129 people in 2017, of whom 25 percent were black people, much higher than their population distribution of 13 percent.

According to a CNN report on September 1, 2017, a white police lieutenant Greg Abbott in the U.S. state of Georgia who has been an officer for more than 20 years stopped a white female driver. The woman said she was scared to move her hands and Abbott interrupted her and said, "You're not black. Remember, we only kill black people." On September 8, 2017, the AP reported that six black Philadelphia police officers filed complaints against their inspectors. Their complaints include referring to black civilians as “scum” and calling black civilian killings “thinning the herd.”

Racist hate crimes hit record high in recent years. According to a new statistical report released by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) on November 13, 2017, a total of 6,121 hate crimes in the United States were reported to the FBI in 2016, to a point not seen in recent history. In the days after the November 2016 presidential election, an increase in racist slogans and hateful messages was reported, especially in schools. The Southern Poverty Law Center found 867 cases of hateful harassment or intimidation in the 10 days after the election (edition.cnn.com, November 13, 2017). According to a report by the website of Al Jazeera on June 10, 2017, white man Adam Purinton, 52, was accused of shouting "get out of my country" as he shot dead one Indian man and injured another at a bar in Kansas. According to the website of New York Post on October 31, 2017, in the summer of 2016, police arrested three men who smashed more than 40 headstones and spray-painted racial slurs and offensive phrases on many headstones that had Asian names on them at a Queens cemetery.

White nationalist protesters sparked violent confrontations. In August 2017, some white nationalists and right-wing protesters converged on Charlottesville, Virginia, shouting "blood and soil," a phrase invoking the Nazi philosophy (edition.cnn.com, August 12, 2017). White nationalist James Alex Fields Jr., 20, drove a car plowing into a group of protesters against white nationalists, killing one person and injuring 19 others (www.cbsnews.com, August 12, 2017). According to a report by the Telegraph on August 13, 2017, U.S. civil rights groups described the riot as America's "largest hate gathering in decades." On August 23, Anastasia Crickley, Chairperson of UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD), said that “We are alarmed by the racist demonstrations, with overtly racist slogans, chants and salutes by white nationalists, neo-Nazis, and the Ku Klux Klan, promoting white supremacy and inciting racial discrimination and hatred.” UN rights experts criticized U.S. government’s failure to unequivocally reject racist violent events, and called on high-level politicians and public officials of the United States to unequivocally and unconditionally reject and condemn racist hate speech and crimes in Charlottesville and throughout the country (www.un.org, August 23, 2017).

Racial relations worsened. According to a Gallup poll released on March 15 last year, 42 percent of Americans say they personally worry a "great deal" about race relations in the United States, up seven percentage points from 2016 and a record high in Gallup's 17-year trend. This is the third straight year worries about this issue have increased by a significant margin. A survey, conducted by Pew Research Center in August, 2017, showed that 58 percent of Americans say racism is a “big problem in our society,” up 8 percentage points in the past two years and having roughly doubled since 2011 (www.pewresearch.org, August 292017). According to a report by BBC website on September 26, 2017, in 2016, National Football League (NFL) player Colin Kaepernick refused to stand up and kneeled during the national anthem. "I am not going to stand up to show pride in a flag for a country that oppresses black people and people of color," he said. A number of players have joined Colin Kaepernick since his demonstrations began.

Racial discrimination occurred frequently. According to a report by BBC website on May 31, 2017, NBA superstar LeBron James said that the "N-word" was spray painted on to his Los Angeles home. He said that racism will always be a part of America, and hate in America - especially for African-Americans - is living every day. The New York Post reported on September 15, 2017 that a volunteer firefighter in Ohio has posted racist remarks on Facebook, saying he’d save a dog from a burning house before a black man. “That’s because one dog is more important than a million n——,” he said. According to a report by the website of New York Daily News on November 3, 2017, two Asian school board candidates in central New Jersey received a racist attack. Residents in Edison received postcards that had photos of the two with “deport” stamped over their faces. Pew Research Center survey showed that some minority groups more frequently encounter harassment that carries racial overtones. A quarter of black Americans and ten percent of Hispanic Americans say they have been targeted online due to their race or ethnicity (www.pewresearch.org, July 25, 2017).

Minority groups have lower employment rate and are paid less. According to a report by the website of Los Angeles Times on September 15, 2017, since the Labor Department began keeping track of unemployment by race in the early 1970s, the black unemployment rate is nearly double the white unemployment rate. In 1979, the average black man in America earned 80 percent as much per hour as the average white man. By 2016, that shortfall had worsened to 70 percent, according to research from the San Francisco Fed (www.washingtonpost.com, September 5, 2017). A report by the website of USA Today on December 16, 2017, said that nationwide, the typical black household earns just 61 percent of the money that the typical white household earns. In Erie, Pennsylvania, the unemployment rate for white people is four percent, while that for black people is up to 24.6 percent. The median income for black people is only 43.2 percent of that for white people. A report by the website of USA Today on October 3, 2017, said that representation of all minority groups is declining in technology companies. According to a report released on March 29, 2017, by a San Francisco-based HR tech company, black people make up only two to three percent of the white-collar workforce — significantly less than their total workforce participation rate of 12 percent. Only about 5 percent of Hispanic workforce contributes to white-collar jobs (www.ibtimes.com, March 31, 2017).

Racial wealth gap becomes larger. According to data released by the Federal Reserve in September last year, between 2013 and 2016, wealth gap between black and white families grew by 16 percent during that time, and by 14 percent between Hispanics and whites. In 2016, white families had a median net worth of 171,000 U.S. dollars, compared with 17,600 U.S. dollars for blacks and 20,700 U.S. dollars for Hispanics, accounting for 10.29 percent and 12.11 percent of that for white families respectively (www.washingtonpost, September 28, 2017). The report issued by the Economic Policy Institute on February 13, 2017, said that more than one in four black households have zero or negative net worth (www.epi.org, February 13, 2017). The median income for an African American household was 39,490 U.S. dollars in 2016, according to U.S. Census Bureau data released in September 2017, even 1,873 U.S. dollars less than that in 2000. African Americans are the only racial group the Census Bureau identifies that has been left behind than the year of 2000 (www.latimes.com, September 15, 2017).

Muslims suffered from discrimination and assaults. On January 27, 2017, the U.S. government issued an order to ban on the entry of citizens from seven Muslim-majority countries: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The order was labeled as "Muslim ban" as countries involved were mainly Muslim population, and aroused protests in the United States and the world. In a Pew Research Center survey conducted in early 2017, three-quarters of Muslim American adults say there is “a lot” of discrimination against Muslims in the United States, a view shared by 69 percent adults in the general public. In addition, half of U.S. Muslim adults say that in recent years it has become more difficult to be a Muslim in the United States. According to a Pew Research Center analysis of hate crimes statistics from the FBI, the number of assaults against Muslims in the United States rose significantly between 2015 and 2016, surpassing the modern peak reached in 2001, the year of the September 11 terrorist attacks (www.pewresearch.org, November 15, 2017).