In 1963 Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous “I Have A Dream” speech, that inspired people to take action to make our nation great. However, statistics have shown that America has digressed since 1963.
During 1963 the national unemployment rate was 5.7% and 10.8% for African Americans. In 2013 the national unemployment rate is 7.4% and 12.6% for African Americans.
Some claim that lingering racism is to blame for the lack of jobs and wealth in the African American community. The director of the Economic Policy Institute’s Program on Race, Algernon Austin, stated, “There continues to be a racial bias in the labor market. Some of it is overt in consciousnesses, some is not.”
In order to get the economy back to it’s former glory we need to bring in jobs, the infrastructure must be repaired, and we must close the wealth gap between whites and blacks. A total of 9 million jobs will be needed to reach the employment levels we had before The Great Depression.
Infrastructure is defined buildings, roads, or the power grid that is used to make and develop a society. It is necessary to fix our infrastructure so we may create jobs for people who need work.
Algernon Austin claims, “Repairing our nation’s crumbling infrastructure is one way to get all Americans back to work. Infrastructure projects create construction, transportation, and a wide range of supporting jobs.” By getting more jobs for African Americans and other races we will begin to close the wealth gap that keeps us separated.
The wealth gap between whites and blacks has tripled since 1984. Although some may blame this gap on lack of savings and financial planning, others will argue that things such as Jim Crow laws and the few available resources. Derrick Hamilton, the associate professor of economics and policy at The New School, states, “Blacks are less involved in entrepreneurship because of assets.”