Philips Sonicare
 
Home > Entertainment and Activities > Holidays > Black History Month > Civil Rights at the Century's End
|

Civil Rights at the Century's End

As the old century gave way to the new, it was hard to say whether African-Americans as a group were in a better or a worse situation than they had been a half-century earlier.

The civil rights movement had won integrated schools and transportation, voting rights, better job opportunities, and real political power. Consider the following benchmark statistic: When Congress passed the Voting Rights Act in 1965, fewer than 100 African-Americans held elective office in the United States; by 1990 there were more than 7,000.

On the other hand, despite these gains, there was a steadily enlarging sense of crisis and alienation in the urban areas where many African-Americans lived, a crisis that carried with it the kind of shocking statistics that reflected over a century of inequity in America's cities.

  • In 1995, an incredible 70.4 percent of African-American babies were born out of wedlock; 35 years earlier, the figure had been 30 percent.
  • As of this writing, it is reliably estimated that 33 percent of all African-American males over the age of 20 are in prison or possess criminal records.
  • African-American infants are roughly twice as likely to die from sudden infant death syndrome as other infants.
  • African-Americans are ludicrously over-represented in the ranks of the American homeless.
  • The suicide rate for African-American teens is not only rising, but rising significantly faster than the rate for white teens.

Given these alarming social signals, it is not surprising that there is still a sense that much remains undone in the African-American community.

|

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to African-American History © 2003 by Melba J. Duncan. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

earth day

celebrate our
planet with
these activities
and crafts.

GO

highlights

Healthy Smile Checklist for Kids
Have better dental check-ups with this free printable checklist that helps keep your child flossing, brushing, and smiling! Brought to you by Philips Sonicare.

Kindergarten Readiness App
It's kindergarten registration time! Use this interactive kindergarten readiness checklist, complete with fun games and activities, to practice the essential skills your child needs for this next big step. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

8 Easter Egg Decorating Ideas
Need some fun ideas for decorating Easter eggs with the kids? Look no further for colorful and cool designs!

7 Ways to Curb Kids' Exposure to Violence
American children are exposed to violence more often than you might think. Learn how to limit your child's exposure to violence and manage the mental health and behavioral effects it can cause.