International City Profile
- New York
Dominic Law CISHZ

Question: How does Racial Equality stand in the modern era ?

Dominic LawMr Kinzer 27 April 2015

Quote on Racial Equality

Racism is still with us. But it is up to us to prepare our children for what they have to meet, and, hopefully, we shall overcome.

Rosa Parks

Racial equality states the equal regards to all races. Easily said, it states the simple regard that people of different races need to be treated equally and fairly. Often also referring to the belief of social equality of people from different races, it stands as the goal of most modern political movements.

This is my second tackk profile which I will investigate my international city profile of New York City.  As stated in my previous tackk, I first came into interest with the question of racial equality through an MUN conference in CISSMUN (Concordia International School Shanghai Model United Nations). Debating on the topic of racial equality, it raised many question throughout my mind. I was part of a team which was writing a resolution of rules and regulations which could protect people of different races, especially ethnic minorities. Until then, my understanding of racial equality was fairly small to an extent that all I had heard about racial equality as more of a political phrase or stance and it never stood in my mind as an actual occurring problem.

Many people might ask me, "Ok, so you've done Hong Kong, we know that it's got problems but New York ? How can the economic capital of the world's most democratic country in the west fall under problems of racism?" Unfortunately, America has been battling it's racial problems for a long time.  From the Baltimore riots, to the controversial police shootings, we have seen many scenes of racism in the US.  Especially in major cities such as New York which can easily be said to be home to the most races, we can see that people actually have problems of such. Through the profile of New York, I would like to investigate different sources and websites that could aid me to my interest in knowing more about New York's problems.

Sub Questions:

  • What does New York has to offer for me to be interested in researching into ? (specialised topics or cases)
  • How has New York been affected by gender equality?
    How has New York’s immigration policy aided towards gender

(understand the picture above in the third link)

Overview Background Information links:

Overview Background Information links:

In order to find background information about New York, I decided to search up information in three sectors, like my previous Asian City profile with Hong Kong. Historical, economical and cultural understandings are important to one’s knowledge of New York as a city, especially with it's diverse cultures. The following webpages are listed below respectively. I believe that this step is crucial to one's basic information of a city as this step greatly aided my knowledge to my Hong Kong city in my previous city profile. Honestly speaking, I found this step to be fairly important, one thing to keep in mind is the bias of the article/ webpage.

The webpage above provides readers with a basic understanding of the historical context of New York. Readers might ask me why I didn't use Lonely which I used for Hong Kong in my Asian City profile. Learning from my mistakes, Lonely planet is a great website as it focuses on a wide variety of historical topics which can be easily read over a short period of time, however experiences from last time showed that Lonely Planet was quite touristy. The reason why I used Hong Kong for my Asian City was because Hong Kong was my hometown and therefore I already had much prior knowledge about the different historical facts of the city. I found Lonely planet to be a bit too touristy, for example it described the Giant Buddha in Hong Kong as more of a tourist spot then it's actual use of a monastery and praying place.

This website is powered by History. com, whom many people might be familiar with through watching documentaries and shows. Unlike lonely planet, this webpage dedicates itself towards my main point of interest- history. It firstly talks about the basic history of New York, from how the British seized the port from the Dutch and changed it's name of New Amsterdam to New York. It also talks about New York in the early 20th century, from the rapid growth of minor districts such as Queens, the Bronx and Staten Island as well as Brooklyn. One of the most important information points of this webpage also falls down towards the starting of history of New York, when the British brought in immigrants from Germany and France and Dutch merchants, as well as slaves from Africa which tells us more about the different races in New York.

As part of my economic research,  I decided to follow my ideas which worked well from my Asian City Profile. Usually, government statistics are biased, however when dealing with such large numbers of economics, I believe that the use of government websites usually prevail. This website is a ongoing research page done by the New York federal reserve economists. Probably the best part of the website falls down to the data and statistics page, the most detailed in the many webpages that I have investigated. I think that this page really aided me also in my thinking process of racial equality. For example, it talks about different regions and data such as revenue, tax payers etc of each district. By showing this, I thought to myself if racial equality differs from different regions ? I mean it might be true to think that poorer places have higher crime rates but do economic hubs such as Wall Street or the CBD of New York also rank high in racial equality from different contradictions that might happen ?

The article above is quite interesting as it is actually an ongoing "blog" created by the wall street journal of New York on the different cultures happening there. In my previous Asian city profile, I thought more towards exploring culture through different historic events. However, for New York, I found out that many of these events have overlapped with my first link, stating that the website is actually very factual. As said, this journal does not include just facts about major events, however it includes different reports and articles and blogs written and submitted by journalists of different nationalities about New York's culture. For example, one of the major blogs this week was the introduction of Pho (Vietnam noodles) towards the city in the Bronx. From this , I can see that people in New York are open to different cultures and thoughts.

Cases of Racial Inequality in New York City

This part of tackk is dedicated towards investigating different cases of racial inequality. This can be done through video articles, newspapers and magazine articles. In order to ensure a high degree of accuracy, we need to rate the article based on it's bias.

A bit of understanding of racial inequality in New York

The article above is published by the New York times on the 1st of October 2014 and it talks about the creation of federal rules to protect ethnic minorities as well as the attempt to abolish racial inequality through education. As said by Arne Duncan, the secretary of education in New York City, " Education is the great equaliser."  We can see through the article that racial inequality rates linger highly in the country as stated by the article in statistical reports and data launched by public education sectors which states that ethnic minorities have a much lower chance of having a experienced or qualified teacher in schools. However, recent changed in administrative processes as stated by the Obama administrative protocol calls for the change and set of rules and regulations to ensure that all races of children are allowed to fair and equal education. Through this, I am able to learn more about the problems of racial inequality through a grassroots level and understand that the starts of racial inequality, like Hong Kong all start from a young age. This piece can be waved off bias as it is from a legitimate source and does not have much opinionated speech.

The article above shows a rather informal view of racism in New York quite recently on April 6 2015 , posted quite recently on April 6 2015in a local "tabloid" like article called the New York Post. People might question the validity of the source and I should state again that there is certainly radical views and biased opinions in the article, and that the source itself definitely isn't creditable, however I believe from my experiences from my previous City Profile that it is crucial to find new perspectives and views however radical on controversial topics like this. In order to find my own perspective, I want to make sure that I have seen as many sides as possible before going to my conclusion. This article writes about the recent ABC comedy "Black-ish" which the author states is a disrespect. The author rages about the allowance of ABC to use such a name in a TV show and that this step was used to engage more people into racial inequality. As multi millionaire Donald Trump said : “How is ABC Television allowed to have a show entitled ‘Black-ish’? ” , Trump tweeted in October. “Can you imagine the furor of a show, ‘White-ish’! Racism at highest level?’’

Data and statistics

The graph above is provided by the Furman centre in New York. The centre specialises in research of debate and housing, neighbourhoods as well as urban policy. As seen, the graph provides different pieces of information of many sectors raging from economical statistics, life span and housing problems such a homeownership rates to education. This graph is able to give us an overview of the many problems happening in New York as well as give us a better idea and brief understanding of the disparities persisted between the different races.  One note should be that the graph should be handled with caution as the article itself might be through biased opinions, for example some data statistics rage from the year of 2011.

The bar graph above, however simple and easy - questions a very interesting problem. I stumbled upon it when searching upon the NYPD website. As seen from the headline article, Blacks in New York are 8 times more likely to be stopped then a white in the city. I was really shocked when I read the statistic as I never thought that such an international city like New York would have such high rates of  ungulitified police checks due to racial colour. As said, the article reads "stops" and not "arrested", so we can presumably believe that the people whom were stopped were usually innocent.

We end this part of investigation with the quote below.

“Most middle-class whites have no idea what it feels like to be subjected to police who are routinely suspicious, rude, belligerent, and brutal.”

Benjamin Spock


Starbucks : Race Together Initiative.  

This part of my tackk covers one interesting article on a case of "anti" racism movement created by food and beverage giants Starbucks and co. Starbucks is an American global coffee company  based in Seattle, Washington. Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world ahead of UK rival Costa Coffee, with 21,536 stores in 64 countries. This year, the company launched a anti racism movement called "Race Together". Basically, baristas and servers all over the United States were required to write the phrase # race together upon each beverage cup, as well as try to engage into fruitful conversation with their clients upon this matter. The article above focuses on New Yorkers and their opinions upon this matter. As seen, many people were actually extremely cautious and reserved when talking upon this matter. The movement soon closed down and now baristas are no longer required to uphold the case. Mr Shultz, the head CEO of Starbucks was also criticised for implementing the movement upon the workers and quotes from employees that there had been outbreaks and arguments through clients and their servers, thus breaking relationships between the people. Through this article, I can see the overall view of New Yorkers on the topic of racism and their reluctancy to speak for the problem. This came into shock with me as I always thought that people living in the US were more outgoing in speech and would easily publish their radical thoughts.

Howord Beach Incident:

This case study brings us a little bit back in the past as I would want to know the evolution of racial inequality in New York. Stumbling upon different historic cases of racism in New York, I came upon this case. The Howard Beach Incident happened in December 1986 where one African-American man was killed and another was beaten in Howard Beach, Queens, New York, in a racially charged incident which heightened racial tensions in New York City. The event happened when 3 african american men Griffith, Sandiford, and Grimes made there way to Queens for a pay phone. When they got there, they decided to dine at a local pizzeria despite a small crowd of caucasian locals whom violently requested them to leave the area. When they finally left the pizzeria at 1240 am, the 3 men were instantly attacked by the white mob resulting in injuries and death. From this, we can see that problems of racial inequality has lingered in New York for quite a long time and that problems of this will continue to happen.


Smith, Emily. "Racism in NY." NYPOST. WordPressVIP, 21 May 2015. Web. 22 May 2015. <>.

Doherty, Bobby. "Can Racism Be Stopped in the Third Grade?" Science of Us. SofUS, 19 May 2015. Web. 22 May 2015. <>.

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