Racial prejudice continues to play significant roles in the contemporary American society as evidenced by the essay loot or find by Harris and Carbado.
Many scholars and civic society continues to argue that racial prejudice is outdated. However, the two distinctive authors Harris and Carbado, of the essay loot or find brings out great sense of sarcasm in the entire concept.
The two authors strive to bring out the idea racial prejudice in the current American society using the events of the hurricane Katrina. The authors utilized two image photographs’ captured by two different photographers from two different media and information services. That is the associated press and the Getty images via the famously recognized France press.
The two images that trended all over the United States the various media channels erupted mixed feelings between varied groups of the American citizens that are specifically between the black and white Americans. the events of the hurricane Katrina that is mainly struggle for survival in the face of calamity among the varied groups in the American society erupted few ideologies that many initially thought had been deeply buried and never to resurrect again.
Ideally, the catastrophic and sad events of the hurricane Katrina revealed the deeply rooted and hidden prejudices that existed in the hearts of many Americans. The first image clearly depicts a black American man wadding through chest deep waters and carrying a black polythene bag. The headlines that followed the photograph caption read that, “a young man walks through chest deep flood waters after looting a grocery store in New Orleans” Harris, Pg. 88 .
The second photograph caption depicts a white American man and woman wadding through the chest deep waters carrying backpacks on their backs after the aftermath of the highly destructive hurricane Katrina. The second image was presented in the media stating that, “two residents wade through chest deep waters after finding bread and soda from a local grocery store after hurricane Katrina came through the area” Harris, Pg. 88.
Rational interpretations of the above photograph captions by the two different photographers led to varied implications among different societal groupings. The most logical and easy conclusion that one can easily come to is that crime has definitely been committed in the first photo caption. The second photo caption depicts fierce struggle for survival in the face of a catastrophe. The use of white and the black subjects also has various implications in the photo captions interpretations.
An in-depth analysis of the two photo captions by different scholars reveals that American mind frames continues to exhibit high levels of racial prejudice. Despite the high degree of color blindness in the American society, many facts and evidences are predetermined by racial prejudices and biasness. This to a greater extend not only undermines the sufferings of the minority victims, but also fails to consider their existence.
Despite the immense justification by the two photographers it is evident that racial frames continuous to operate in the minds and hearts of many Americans. Racial stereotype takes an upper hand in developing facts, basis and opinions. This has always been the source of all the conflicts and controversies that has a racial background which exists in the American society.
The civic societies and organizations should be in the forefront in eradicating the racial frames and mindsets in the entire American society. One should view a neighbor in need not depending on the basis of the color their skins but on the intensity and urgency of their need. Respect and concern for humanity should be the basis for coexistence in the current American society.
Harris and Carbado. "Loot or Find." After the storm: Black intellectuals explore the meaning of Hurricane Katrina. New York: New Press :, 2006. 87-109. Print.