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Suzy Shirinian
Holly Batty
English 114A
21, October 2014
Society‟s Call for Segregation
Segregation is a separation of humans into racial groups in daily life. Segregation
was taken place ever since the 1900s. Racism is the belief that the physical characteristics
of a person or group determine their capabilities and that one group is naturally superior
to other groups. The expression of segregation is an act of which humans of the white
race distinguish the society of color. There are many different ways of advertising racial
segregation. Starting with a political cartoon by Loren Fishmen, which presents an office
workforce including white men only, dressed up in fancy suits. In this political cartoon, a
white man is having a conversation with another white man and he is quoted, “Oh, you‟ll
love working here. Nobody treats you any differently just because of your age, race, or
gender.” The racist part here is that the office only contains white men and they feel
comfort and equality within each other; however, if an African American man were to be
working there, they would feel uncomfortable and the situation would be completely
different. Segregation has triggered in schools, neighborhoods, and continues to spread
throughout the general public.
Schools had been differentiated by the color of your skin. The class or status level
was determined by one‟s race. African Americans got treated less then their value based
off of the color of their skin. In “Black Men and Public Spaces” Brent Staples
exemplifies, “At dark, shadowy intersections in Chicago, I could cross in front of a car

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stopped at a traffic light and elicit the thunk, thunk, thunk, of the driver-black, white,
male or female-hammering down the door locks” (183). This quote further reveals the
quick judgment from society towards African Americans and their physical appearance.
Staples demonstrates his history with racial segregation by providing his personal
experience where he got negatively criticized for his innocent actions. The article can
easily relate to the cartoon because without even working with an African American man,
the white men already criticize that the environment would be intolerable. This act of
segregation separated neighborhoods as well. Just as the cartoon had strictly white men
working, residential segregation took place.
Residential segregation categorizes population groups into various neighborhood
contexts, and shapes the living environment at the neighborhood level. Housing
segregation in the United States developed slowly and deliberately. In most suburban
rings, there are areas where people live in manufactured housing and others with
magnificent homes. One of the most important ways in which neighborhoods differ is in
their racial composition. Political cartoons involve the sarcastic truth of racial activity.
Some are made with humor to appeal to their audience, and some are just flat out
disrespectful. Racial segregation in the general public was and still is a very immense
conflict. African Americans did not get the advantage to sit at diners of their choice,
attend the same schools, or even sit down on the buses without getting harassment for
their actions. Segregation became the norm over the years; therefore, the act of racism
would not get noticed or addressed as much as it should have.
Just as in Loren Fishman‟s political cartoon on racial segregation, the message
behind the image simply states that a workforce with only Caucasian men is how it

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should be if you want a proper workforce, oppose to a diverse environment. “Black Men
and Public Spaces” associates with this conflict because the author was also judged upon
by society without knowledge of whom he truly is. Since the cartoon demonstrates men
dressed equally in fancy suits, that image gives society the thought that being different is
wrong or not accepted. However, difference in cultures and backgrounds in the world is
what sums up traditions, which should always live on. Regardless of your nationality or
the color of your skin, one should never be doubted upon or treated less than their
deserved value.
Nonetheless, African Americans did not allow segregation to take over their daily
lives. They took action and fought back my holding protests such as „Sit-ins.‟ Sit-ins
involve one or more people of the colored race to occupy a certain area for the purpose of
protesting. Mainly, African Americans went to any diner of which they were prohibited
from and simply sat there to prove social, political, or economic change to the opposing
race. They remain until they are evicted, usually by force of the law, or once their
requests have been met. Sit-ins are a highly successful form of protest; however they did
not have it easy due to the feedback they would get from the white society, as well as the
law. African Americans had to swallow their pride and allow the thought of success to
lead their minds to victory. The white society would throw food at them, pour their iced
cold drinks on their heads, or even spit on them in hopes for them to give up. Police
officers would come to arrest them but that did not stop them from continuing their
protests. They sat there until they aroused sympathy from the public, increasing chances
of the protesters reaching their audience.

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As you can see, segregation is still alive today; however, not as much as how it
used to be. The act of separating groups by their race has changed lives drastically. Loren
Fishmen‟s political cartoon might allow one to think that white men are more superior
oppose to African American men due to their level of accomplishment, but isn‟t it quite
ironic that the dictator of our country happens to be a powerful, strong African American
man?

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Works Cited
Fishmen, Loren. "Ageism Cartoons and Comics." - Funny Pictures from CartoonStock.
N.p., n.d. Web. 20 Oct. 2014. <http://www.cartoonstock.com/directory/a/ageism.asp>.
Staples, Brent. "Black Men and Public Spaces." Arguing Through Literature. New York:
McGraw Hill, 2005. 1060-062. Print.

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Appendix
Loren Fishmen‟s Political Cartoon: