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Submitted By danesisf
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Pages 5
Dameka Jones
Soc 220
Essay 1

Social problems in our society need to be recognized and addressed. However, there are so many different focuses, limited light can efficiently be shed on each. I believe that social problems in our culture and world that are recognized can be taken advantage of by the media and twisted in ways suitable for politicians and the powerful in our society. Unfortunately, social problems can never truly be solved and despite the knowledge we have of repeating history, we are doomed to dwell in our never-ending troubles. Our attempts to solve one social issue will cause another issue to be created or rise. The book by Ira Silver contained very relevant and interesting social problems. It was hard to decide which two to discuss, so I was drawn to ones that I witnessed that compelled me to find more information about.
The first I am going to discuss is the recurring issues that are discussed in chapter 4. Police mistreatment of blacks I have witnessed many times. I was in the position in life to be exposed to the police patrolling the streets of the poorer sides of town. The areas I lived in were where black populations were high because due to our American history, blacks were one of the largest groups of minorities neglected by society. They have been predispositioned to live in poverty. Police has ignored me while the friend I was with would be harassed and interrogated for no reason. It interested me that the book pointed out the fact police have the mentality to see the poor as criminals and criminals are rivals to police. The discussion of zero-tolerance can be debatable. Some may believe that is the only approach that can be successful when dealing with crime. Yet. As Richard Emery stated, freedom has to have some tolerance(Silver 64). And as Reppetto pointed out, it is very hard to practice the balance of good crime control and people’s rights. Rights of people are violated every day by law enforcement. So the question becomes which is more important? How can crime be controlled, if rights are continuously violated? People become angry, resent the controls in society that were meant to protect them, but instead abused them. The zero-tolerance has consequence in swift action of the police, sometimes to swift. As this chapter pointed out, there have been many, many cases in which a person has been guilty until proven innocent. Yet, we claim America operates justly by innocent until proven guilty. Many people, mostly the poor, which results in a lot of blacks, are thrown in jail without any evidence, proof, only merely on suspicion. It angers me that the police operate merely on suspicion, and as Ira Glasser was quoted,” When you rely on hunches, you rely on prejudices..”
Of course politicians have something to do with all of this. They are constantly pushing for law enforcement to crack down and as the book proves, communicates the attitudes they expect from law enforcement, which are zero- tolerant ones. They are ones that easily become interfered as our rights as citizens. The second social problem I’m going to discuss is from the last chapter, chapter 33. Gaming on Native American reservations isn’t a social issue many think or care about, but they should. There is so much concern over how much in debt our country is, where our economy is headed, solutions to get out of debt, etc. The media of course frenzies up everything, and our economy is no exception. But why isn’t the discussion of such small groups of people can receive the majority of wealth. Instead the focus on the poor is scrutinized. Here is an example of small groups receiving such large incomes, while a vast majority struggles. Native Americans have, in the past few decades, received a “calling” from the government to open up casinos. Here, they can make money and relieve pressure off the government to do something beneficial about the impoverished Native Americans our past government trampled and ignored. This chapter intrigued me because even I participated in what is a largely corrupted fake solution to an ongoing social problem. This chapter reveiled to me the obvious truth in what is really going on without questions. Very small groups of Native Americans are becoming extremely wealthy by taking advantage of the Indian Gaming Act enacted by congress. Once this Act was passed it created a new dilemma in social corruption. The bread winning Native Americans were able to afford the necessary fees associated with campaigns and influences involving the benefits of Native Americans. Many of the wealthy were still receiving bebfits from the government taxpayers were paying for. Receiving substantial incomes and benefits by the federal government are two items usually on opposite ends. Yet, here they are presented as facts about the big casino Native Americans. As the rich got richer exclusions and limiting became enforced. Once the money started coming in, greed came in as well. The less people included, the more money there is to go around. Money almost always results in corruption, and as gaming riches are undetected, dishonesty became known. It is controlled by intimidation and money. The last of the conflict discussed is the fact that white men always win. As pointed out in the text, those unknown investors behind the scenes are the ones really profiting. They don’t care whose unjustified, because they have power and want to keep it. The support the casinos and walk away unharmed and profiting. They don’t have to answer to nobody, and are taking advantage of the caerelessness of the situation. Loopholes and backroom deals, the author describes as the elements to the investors ability to do it. As I worked at the Native American casino, the Four Winds, it is clearly profiting. I knew there where different rules the casino had to abide by federally. This chapter discussed the same social issues I thought about many times working there. The management company, Lakes, that invested in the tribal casino was bought out by the tribe two years earlier then it was originally scheduled. Tribal members became more limited on admission as well. The percentage required in the blood increased with profits. This chapter was an interesting revelation to something in my life.…...

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