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Negative racial stereotypes are a special challenge for African-American males especially in the workforce. One of the greatest challenges that I have had to overcome happens to be the negative stereotypes about African-American males. I have had countless experiences wherein people have reacted to me in a negative way simply because of my skin color. These negative reactions were the result of negative stereotypes. One of the experiences that I have had many times over the years happens to be the issue of being perceived as a thug, a robber, a thief, or someone who is extremely violent simply because of my skin color. These negative stereotypes are also present in the workforce.
African-American males experience great levels of stress simply because of how they look. Without saying anything or doing anything African-Americans males are prejudged based upon negative racial stereotypes. Many people are oblivious to this truth because they have not experienced this type of stress-inducing prejudice. I have had this experience countless time.
Problems and Stresses within the Work Force
One of the issues facing many African-American males is the challenge of simply being accepted as a viable option within the workforce in the first place. Often times as an African-American you can come to the table with the same qualifications as someone else but because you are an African-American and you look a certain way your value is somehow less than the other people who do not look like you. In other words, part of your value and part of the qualification that is taken into consideration is how you look (racial identity).
A lot of the workforce related stress that many African-Americans experience, even if they are well educated, has to do with the fact that they are not judged singularly by what they can contribute within the workforce but also based upon their physical appearance. In other words, the negative stereotypes that are associated with African-American males play a part in terms of whether or not African-American males are selected for specific workforce positions.
Psychological Manipulation in the Workforce and Racial Expectations
I have observed many racial expectations on the job especially as it relates to how people perceive African-American males. There are white people who have these racial expectations about African-American people. Here are 3 of those racial expectations:
#1 The African-American male as The Helper
This would be the equivalent to the house-negro or the house slave. The idea is that not only do you help white people but you help with extra vigor and with the intent of pleasing white people far beyond the scope of your job responsibilities. The African-American male worker will go out of his way to help white people even at his own expense.
#2 The African-American male as the Comedian/Entertainer
In this case the job of the African-American male is to be funny and make white people laugh. This plays itself out in both the work environment and in social settings wherein African-American males are in the presence of white people.
#3 The African-American male as the Lazy Slave
The African-American male is innately lazy and therefore he must be carefully watched, instructed, and guided so that they are productive on the job. With this racial expectation the African-American male will experience higher levels of stress on the job.
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Tags: Racism, Negative Racial Stereotypes, Black Men, Black women, Lenon Honor, Umar Johnson, Dr Phil Valentine, Amos Wilson, Francis Cress Welsing, Global White Supremacy, Black consciousness community, Queen Afua, Djehuty Maat Ra, Taj Tarik Bey, Hidden Colors, conscious hip hop, Doctah B Sirius, Urban Kryptonite, Tarik Nasheed, how to overcome racism, Booker T. Coleman, Sabir Bey, Michelle Alexander, Tony Browder, Claud Anderson, Runoko Rashidi, James Small, Dick Gregory