Thursday, December 5, 2019
Kozols Amazing Grace Trials And Tribulations Of E Essay Example For Students
Kozols Amazing Grace: Trials And Tribulations Of E Essay veryday LifeKozols Amazing Grace: Trials and Tribulations of Everyday LifeIntroductionJonathan Kozols Amazing Grace is a book about the trials andtribulations of everyday life for a group of children who live in the poorestcongressional district of the United States, the South Bronx. Their lives mayseem extraordinary to us, but to them, they are just as normal as everyone else. What is normal? For the children of the South Bronx, living with the pollution,the sickness, the drugs, and the violence is the only way of life many of themhave ever known. In this book, the children speak openly and honestly about feeling abandoned, hidden or forgotten by our nation, one that is blind to theirproblems. Studying the people themselves would only get us so far inunderstanding what their community is really like and why they feel this way. Jonathan Kozol really got to know the people individually. We can take hisknowledge and stories to try for a better understanding of the environment inwhich they live. By doing this, we can explore the many reasons why the peoplehave problems, what some levels of intervention could be, and possibly find somesolutions to making the South Bronx a healthier and safer place for thesechildren and others to live. Problem IdentificationThe environment in which we study these people can only be defined byfirst taking a look at possible reasons why the people have problems. Some ofthe problems discussed in Amazing Grace have festered throughout the UnitedStates for some time now. The high numbers of drug users in the community, thehigh amounts of gang-related violence, and the numerous cases of people who havecontracted the AIDS virus are just some of the problems that have arisen in thisghetto. There are many differences between this community and others in theUnited States, one of which is that the government has grouped these people alltogether and made a ghetto of the lowest income families. This has ostracizedthem from the rest of the nation. It has given them many abandonment issues todeal with, while also telling them they are not worthy of living among thewealthier population. Environmental factors are involved in the problems arising in the SouthBronx. Pollution, for example, could be the biggest source of the high numberof children in the community who have asthma. Asthma is a condition in whichone has trouble breathing. Without clean air, breathing for an asthmatic isalmost impossible. A waste burner in the middle of the South Bronx causes a lotof pollution and makes the air the people breath, below safe levels ofcleanliness. Another environmental factor that affects the residents healthshas to do with how most of the buildings in these neighborhoods are run down andinfested with rats. Many of the buildings have no working elevators. Thiscauses people to have to walk several flights of stairs each time they want toleave their apartments. This is very time consuming and tiresome. Then, whenthey find that there is so much violence and drugs in the street, that it is notsafe to be out there anyway, they usually end up staying in their apartments formost of their free time. The cultural differences between these people and others of higherincome communities is also a reason why they may have problems. Racism is veryobvious to the people of the South Bronx, especially when they go outside oftheir district. If a woman from this area goes to a hospital outside of herdistrict, a hospital that is more than likely wealthier and cleaner, she isusually turned away and told to go to a hospital in her own district. Others,who are admitted into these hospitals, are put on a special floor, mainly forthe lower income or Medicaid patients. (Amazing Grace, p. 176)Another way the government discriminates against them is how they arehoused. Most of the residents are living in government housing where thegovernment pays their rent. When the government helped the people to get offthe streets and out of homeless shelters and then put them into low cost housing,they put all of the residents in the same area. This created their ghetto andkept them segregated from the rest of the world. Peer Pressure EssayThe problems of the South Bronx are not with the individuals themselves, butrather community organizational problems. Changing the social policy of thecommunity is of utter importance in making it a better place to live. The normsfor the people in these neighborhoods have gotten to be that of violence anddrugs. These are not healthy norms. To change them, the communities could usemore education on social issues in the schools and communities to help thepeople learn to live healthier lifestyles, to get the word out that violence anddisruptance are not all right, and to help the people obtain some communityunity. Getting some of the well known community members involved in politics isanother way they could get their voices heard and let the government know theirneeds and desires. Support groups held for people with AIDS, for people whohave lost loved ones, and also for people who just need a place to talk abouttheir emotions and get their frustrations out, would he lp the community as awhole and get more people involved in the healing process of that community. Ifthe people in the South Bronx would act as a community bound together to helpthemselves and each other, there would be less tolerance for deviant behavioramong its members. Then the ones who act defiantly could be out-numbered, andthe good citizens of the South Bronx could reclaim their homes and their lives.