There are often national level debates and concerns as to the persistence of racial wealth gaps even after more than a century of abolishment of slavery. While some are of the view that this wealth gap between the whites and the blacks could only move towards convergence by encouraging financial literacy among the African Americans and other racial/ethnic communities. In contrast, others just consider this thought to be a myth and well this is partially true and false.
The encouragement and adoption of financial literacy among the oppressed will obviously pave their path towards a resourceful and comfortable life but restoring to the fact that financial literacy is the only path towards redemption is a false concept. And before we march towards the former we do need to eradicate the possibility of the latter.
Bringing about changes in the minds and behaviour of African American individuals cannot altogether close the racial wealth gap existing in the society. But continuous efforts to classify or characterize this wealth gap based on lack of education or illiteracy is merely a false and misguided representation of the persistence of racism in the roots of America.
Reasons of persistence of Racial Wealth Gap
Reports and studies prove that African Americans and those belonging to other ethnic minority groups were always a target for moral and ethical suppression. Not only were they denied political rights and lack of speech or expression but they also faced disparities in investments for public services within the black community. Structural segregation further secluded the whites from the blacks; dividing the nation into separate communities. But the prominent reasons for the persistence of the racial wealth gap are confined to racial discrimination in housing and employment.
It is common to witness discrepancy in the distribution of wealth between the two groups of individuals. Despite the same level of education and experience; a Black employee will always be subjected to racism which provides the basis for unequal wages. Statistics showcase that an average white family is expected to earn at least 10 times more than their black counterparts and this gap continues to widen as years pass.
Another major reason is partiality in hiring of employees. African Americans and other Black individuals are often prevented from acquiring important positions in firms that in return affect their earning capacity and henceforth their accumulation of wealth.
What worth would financial literacy be if you are deprived off your fundamental rights and opportunities? The biasness of corporate firms and organizations largely towards hiring non-black individuals into recognised positions with high scale remuneration deprive African Americans off means of development. Without receiving equal rights in selection and remuneration how can one proceed towards wealth accumulation?
So instead focusing on enhancing financial literacy and uplifting the minds of the ethnic minorities, we should rather focus on forms of repairing decades of social injustice and inequality through enactment of economical and judicial policies that particularly seek for them; justice and freedom. In order to completely eliminate the racial wealth gap, major redistributions in the existing American structure and policy interventions must be applied in place.