Economic Oppression

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By Dr. Elizabeth Daniels


     Economic oppression has many names such as racial and gender discrimination.

     Oppression occurs so that money and resources will be distributed as favors to the family and friends of the ruling class. Prior to the civil rights acts of the 50s to 70s, African Americans and women had less educational opportunity than white men.

     Many people are unaware that white women received their civil rights when the laws permitting racial discrimination were struck down. The discrimination against white women started at the university and professional levels. There were only token opportunities to become lawyers, doctors, pilots, police women, fire fighters and athletes to name a few.   

     Education leads to gainful employment. However, education does not necessarily create jobs for African Americans. Current laws make it more difficult to carry out oppression. The move to control pregnancies shows how oppression can resurface. Regulate birth control and you oppress many women.

     Panic is driving most oppression these days. The 2008 presidential election created panic when a white female and black male squared off as the Democratic nominee. Some panicked factions came out of their hiding places and focused attacks on blacks, women, poor people, and undocumented immigrants.

     The decrease in the number of industries in the U.S. is contributing to economic oppression. Many companies moved abroad. People lost jobs and the ability to buy goods. Markets dried up in America as consumers lost jobs. 

     Now high gas prices are oppressing many people. And some leaders do not want to see an African American serve as president. Since many people love America, expect the nation to continue to move forward.

Dr. Elizabeth Daniels is the President of the Portsmouth NAACP.

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