Today's lesson, Racism. If you see something written here that you’ve said or done, use it as an opportunity. Take it as a wake up call and make the decision to grow, change and be conscious of your own privilege. Remember, I am not a speaker for the entirety of a people. Use this blog as a reference tool, not as the one and only view on the topic.
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Black people are worth less in America.
Let’s start with something you likely already know, black people make less money for doing the same work. I believe this is fairly common knowledge. Although I did see someone post something on Facebook (Which I will address in a later post) saying that she thought white women made less than black men. This is inaccurate. White women make substantially more.
I am just going to give you a few numbers here so that we can move on to the harder topic. Black Americans make (as of 2010) 57.9% of what white Americans do. Approximately $1,500 less a year. This isn’t Earth shattering information but the next part might be for some of you.
This next part is the reason this will be the last Myth Busters for a while. I was not prepared for the reality and frankly, it made my heart and my stomach ache.
Black babies cost less. If you adopt, you will pay a significantly higher fee for a white child than a black one. I read an article a few days ago saying that in Texas, a white baby cost more than $10,000 more than a black baby. When I went back to try to find that article so that I could link it, I was sad to find that the disproportionate prices are the same everywhere in America. This article from the Illinois Times states that in one adoption agency black babies cost $9,200 while a white baby costs $25,000. (Although the article is from 2005, it seems that the gap has actually gotten bigger, not smaller.) Another agency charges $7,250 for black babies and $19,750 for white babies. A Christian based agency charges between $6,500-$14,00 for black babies and $15,00-$27,000 for white ones. Finally, it gives an outside state’s agency rates just to show that it wasn’t just happening in Illinois. A Kansas based agency gives (This is a direct quote from the article) Prospective parents the option of either an agency-assisted adoption for $12,000 to $19,000 or a traditional adoption for $20,00 to $35,000. Now, get ready to vomit…The traditional adoption is defined as ALL NON-AFRICAN AMERICAN HEALTHY NEWBORNS AND INFANTS. While the CHEAPER program is for African American or any race combined with African american heritage.
Somehow, I got some sort of relief in thinking it was a “Texas thing.” I mean, it was horrible but look what happens in Texas all the time. I wasn’t surprised. Then, I found page after page showing the same thing and not just the same thing but the same thing EVERYWHERE.
I was extremely upset by it and made the mistake of having a conversation with some people. The comment “It’s bad but doesn’t that mean that it is more likely that the black baby will get adopted if it’s cheaper” was made. I had to try not to vomit. No, I am not going to be nice about this…I had to try not to take this person out at the knees. There is no justification. There is no silver lining. There is no single thing anyone could ever say to make this situation better.
Black babies cost less.
No matter how you spin it, it does speak to our worth in America. Especially since it is the norm.
My heart is broken.