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Diversity in the United States of America

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Today in the United States of America, we are made up of many different people who come in many different shapes, sizes, colors and ethnic backgrounds. The U.S. is considered to be one big melting pot, a very diverse nation. In many communities, neighborhoods, local governments, service groups, clubs, schools, workplaces and even environments around the world have many people that are influenced by race. Some racial influence can be good, while most racial influences are bad. I have always been around diversity my entire life, whether it's from Queens New York City, where I grew up and completed all 12 grades in school or in the military where I spent the last 11 years of my life working for the United States Air Force. In a short time after joining the U.S. military I have had the privilege to traveling all over the world, and luckily I have never been confined to just being around my own race, I have always accepted and respected every race and nationality even when the feeling was not reciprocated.

As a young child growing up in Queens NY, I have seen many things that I am not particularly proud of. Racism has plagued this country for centuries and still exists to this day. Many members of my community looked like me, an African American because of the brown skin, but many were different. There were Haitians, Jamaicans and Trinidadians in Queens NY among others, all looking the same but many having different traditions and different backgrounds. In New York at times those who didn't look like an African American, mostly Caucasians were racially attack and ridiculed as some sort of pay back for our past African American history. In my community there are mixtures of different cultures and races. Now that I an adult and understand it gives me the opportunity to observe first hand many of the differences that exist between each individual race. I believe every community consists of people who are of the same race but who look and act differently. The ways that I have seen we are alike are the fact that most of the African American men in my community all seem to be family men who work and provide support for their families. Even though there are many different races in my community we all get along fairly well. No one treats anyone any different than they would the next person. I live in a neighborhood now where everyone is pretty close and have lived there for 20 years or more. My family is probably one of the newest to our neighborhood now but we were welcomed with open arms and have not been given any preferential or differential treatment then our other neighbors. Even though we are treated the same as everyone else within my small confined neighborhood, my community as a whole is much larger and greater issues exist.

From past experience I do notice that there is a difference in the way law enforcement in my community treats African Americans. From my opinion they seem to be targeted and harassed more. Growing up in my community in New York there was always an obvious difference in treatment towards African Americans and the other races that resided in my community. This negative treatment has helped mold and shape my views and attitude toward law enforcement even in my present. Throughout my early education I noticed that my race was always misrepresented in my text books and curriculums. My teachers would touch on different aspects of my African American culture, but it was very brief and limited. We would possibly touch



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