The over-all thrust of this unit is to link America’s multi-ethnic past to its present social relations among ethnic groups, with the intent of directing the course of our inheritance in its future. It is intended as a brief examination of the Constitution—the spirit and the letter of its laws, as it relates to equal rights for all American citizens. Through this unit students are encouraged to make critical evaluations of their own sense of justice and fairness, as it relates to the rights of others.
While America boasts equality for all, the dominant group practices an overt racism which continually grants preferred status to a favored few of its citizenry. However, we have only to look back through the history of racial protests and civil unrest, religious struggles, and women suffrage to remind ourselves that the term “We the people” as stated in our constitution is reserved for those favored few who are “truly” American.
In an attempt to explore both the theoretical and practical sides of the expression “We the People” a cursory investigation into human rights for all of America’s citizens will be unavoidable. As a part of this exploration, I raise the question- What does it profit America to violate the rights of so many of its citizens in order to grant preferred status to a favored few ?
Today, in multi-ethnic America, as it has been since its founding, favored few has meant European whites. Still today, in multi-ethnic America, even after staging numerous legal battles, waging a bloody civil war, and amending the constitution, we are forced to continue a search for human and equal rights for all Americans.