How America Fails Black Girls
ARTICLE REVIEW 1
HowAmerica Fails Black Girls
The article “” was located in theopinions pages of the New York Times. The piece was written by anexperienced Op-ed contributor referred to as Morgan Jenkins. She“graduated from Princeton University with an AB in ComparativeLiterature, specializing in nineteenth century Russian literature andpostwar modern Japanese literature, and has an MFA from theBennington Writing Seminars” (“Morgan Jerkins,” 2017). Thearticle showed that black girls were often exposed to adverseoutcomes due to discrimination. Reports concerning missing blackgirls were inadequately covered by mainstream media (Jerkins, 2017).African American girls could not rely fully on the protection of lawenforcement agents. In this paper, I will show that the articleprovides sufficient evidence to support the implementation ofsignificant policy changes.
Notably, the author provided several pieces of evidence to show howthe U.S. had failed black girls. For example, the mainstream mediachannels would have minimized the issue of missing black children ifit were not for social media. In this regard, the Houserepresentative of Louisiana and the Congress representative ofDistrict of Columbia wrote to the Justice Department (Jerkins, 2017).The letter mentioned that 10 black children had disappeared inWashington, D.C. within two weeks. Furthermore, the author cited the2016 figures from the National Crime Information Center. Over 33% ofmissing persons were African Americans although blacks comprised only13% of the country’s population. (Jerkins, 2017). Therefore, blackgirls were identified as one of the most vulnerable populations.
In addition, the article showed that black girls were unjustlytreated by being classified as runaways. Findings from the 2016 studyby the National Conference of State Legislatures were cited to showthe major reasons for leaving home. 46% of homeless youths werephysically abused while 38% encountered emotional abuse (Jerkins,2017). On the other hand, 17% of runaways were subjected to sexualharassment by family members. Moreover, the National Coalition ofAnti-Violence Programs showed that 55% “of homicide victims inL.G.B.T. and H.I.V.-affected communities in 2014 were transgenderwomen of color” (Jerkins, 2017). Hence, nonblack feminists paidless attention to violence against black transgender ladies.
Classifying missing black girls as voluntary runaways is thestrongest evidence that proves the existence of racialdiscrimination. Law enforcement agents usually claimed that mostmissing teenagers left their homes voluntarily (Jerkins, 2017). Suchallegations often undermined the importance of the issue. Policeofficers were not particularly interested in launching criminalinvestigations. Some black girls escaped from their homes due tophysical, sexual, and emotional abuse. Irresponsible parents andother family members made it impossible for teenagers to stay athome. It was crucial to involve members of the public in a search formissing teenagers. The chances of successful outcomes dwindled withthe passage of time. In this regard, classifying missing girls aswilling runaways portrayed the latter as responsible adults (Jerkins,2017). Members of the public were more likely to blame such teenagersfor ensuing consequences. Rather, missing black girls deserve to beviewed as children in need of urgent protection (Jerkins, 2017).Besides, law enforcement officers often neglected their duties byfailing to safeguard transgender women against violence.
Indeed, the article provided conclusive evidence to support theimplementation of several policy changes. Mainstream mediaorganizations have provided less coverage for missing black girlsrelative to their white counterparts. The bias against AfricanAmerican girls is also evident where their runaway status wasinterpreted as willful. Hence, police officers neglected theirmandate to provide protection for women of color. Black transgenderwomen were also subjected to increasing cases of violence.Consequently, more resources must be spent on locating missing blackgirls. A taskforce could also be established to identify and addressthe systemic factors that led girls to disappear from home. Broadreforms within the police force would encourage officers to pay moreattention to cases of violence against black transgender women.
Jerkins, M. (2017, March 29). . TheNew York Times. Retrieved fromhttps://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/29/opinion/how-america-fails-black-girls.html?_r=1
“Morgan Jerkins.” (2017, March 3). Retrieved fromhttp://www.morgan-jerkins.com/
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