How Were African Americans Second Class Citizens

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‘To what extent were Black Americans 2nd class citizens by the end of World War II?’ By the end of the Second World War, there were clear signs of change for Black Americans. At first black people were unable to get jobs due to racism. Black activist A. Philip Randolph was appalled at this ‘colour bar’. In response to Randolph’s threats, Roosevelt issued an executive order creating the Fair Employment Practices Commission (FEPC) in 1941. This forced industries employed in the war effort not to discriminate on the grounds of ‘race, creed, colour or national origin’ when deciding who to hire. The campaigning of activists such as A. Phillip Randolph showed that putting pressure on the government could force politicians to act in favour of racial equality. In the North, political power of African Americans was also increasing. In northern states, black voters held the balance of power as if the black community voted as a block; they could…show more content…
However, you could argue that although they had won the right to vote, segregation still continued throughout the South and lynchings and discrimination continued in the North. I would say that there was substantial change for blacks in the North as they were getting more highly paid and were starting to receive better education, although the lack of equality still remained between black and white Americans as black Americans were still being paid much less than white workers. I also believe that as there were many black campaigns and activists after the war, this could suggest that there was still a want for equality on the black Americans half which puts forward the idea that despite having helped fought for their country, they were still being treated as second class
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