Health Disparities May have Underlying Racial factors.

April 5, 2012
Ovary Cancer Mortality Rate per 100,000 Massachusetts Lowell City, MA Weston town MA
WHITES – Only 8.8 10.6 6.6
BLACKS –  Only 6.5 0.0 0.0
ASIANS Only-  3.1 0.0 0.0


Table Source: MassCHIP, Department of Public Health. Found at:

Other Sources:

“Immigrant Women’s Health: Nutritional Assessment and Dietary Intervention.” Western Journal Of Medicine. Aug. 2001. Web. <>.

The data presented in the table above represents the Mortality rates of specific racial groups in Lowell city Weston and Massachusetts whole.  The racial groups examined were Whites only, Blacks only and Asians only.


Asians Only
  Asians represented the group with the lowest mortality  in  Massachusetts compared to the other race groups.  With  a mortality rate of 3.1 per 100,000 people in Massachusetts, it is almost an  undeniable fact that Asians  in Massachusetts  suffer less from Ovarian cancer compared to the Whites and Blacks with 8.8 and 6.5 respectively. Their  mortality rates were also zero in the town of Weston and Lowell.


Reason for Health Disparity

According to the census data, Asians median income are less compared to   whites.  Based on this, unaffordable health care in Weston or Lowell might cause them to seek care in other towns. the resulting effect is mortality rate that are either low or non existent in those towns. This is evident from the data in the table. They had zero mortality rates in both Lowell and Massachusetts.

Other  reason that may be the cause of the stated health data about Asians, is the role of diet. Diet factors may pale a role in the susceptibility to death by ovarian cancer. According  to  research by University of California ,School of Medicine, one diet contributes to developing any type of cancer. This researched stated that a typical Asian diet consist  of vegetables, rice and legumes.   Ovarian cancer is attributed to diets in high fat.  As a result of this, Asian face lesser occurrences of Ovarian cancer. This serves as a race related pattern that explains the numbers in the table above.

Black Only :

The MassChip data above shows a lower mortality rate for Blacks  in the town of Lowell ,Weston and Massachusetts  compared to the  White Population

Moreover  the rates for Ovarian cancer deaths for black s were zero(0) in the  Lowell and Weston. There weren’t any deaths in those two towns during the period of data collection.

Reason for Health Disparity

One reason  for this disparity maybe that, the  cost of being hospitalized  in  the town of Weston and Lowell is  too high. As a result  minority groups favor hospitalization in a  different town with affordable  health care.  The end result, is a little to no data on mortality rate for certain expensive  conditions like  Ovarian cancer  in a town like Weston and Lowell.


Whites Only:

According to this data by MassCHIP, Whites have a high mortality rate in Lowell, Ware and Massachusetts compared to the two other racial groups (Asians and Blacks)

Reason for Health Disparity:

The possible reasons for this health Disparity is quite difficult to pinpoint.  Regardless of the town, the mortality rate was high for Whites.The contributing factors for Ovarian cancer  according to the research are diet, genetics,  and lifestyle. (Western journal Of Medicine).  One can however, vaguely say that the lifestyles led by the White race ( Women) contributes to their high mortality rate compared to the other two race. White women may also be genetically disposed to Ovarian cancer compared to Asians and Blacks.



Both Blacks and Asians in the town of Lowell and Weston had a zero (0) rate of Ovarian cancer mortality.  This was not surprising because blacks and Asians are of the minority group. Therefore, a similarity between them is common and expected.  Why is there a zero (0) rate in these two cities for these minority groups? An underlying factor is the unaffordable health care  in the Lowell and Weston .  As a result, these  groups were hospitalized in a different towns and face their ultimate death or survival there .

Overall, one can say that race plays some role in health disparities in America. In this case, mortality rate of ovarian cancer differ drastically among Whites, Blacks and Asians. This, I believe is a disparity that is triggered by lifestyle, diet , genetics of a specific group and affordability of health care in specific locations.





Economic Inequality is prevalent in America

March 22, 2012
  FAMILY United States Massachusetts Lowell City, MA Weston town MA
WHITES – Only MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME  $53356 $65,327 $49,759 $195,087
  % BELOW POVERTY LEVEL(FAMILIES)   6.3% 4.6% 10.3% 2.1%
BLACKS –  Only MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME $33,255 $38,565 $34,489   N/A
  % BELOW POVERTY LEVEL(FAMILIES) 21.6% 18.3% 20.8%    N/A
ASIANS Only-  MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOME $59324 $57,893 $45,597 $153,555
  %BELOW POVERTY LEVEL(FAMILIES) 9.7% 12.4% 16.8%  2.7%



The following is a summary based on the data from the table above:

 White Only:  

Families Median Income- This ethnic group has a high median income in all Selected domiciles:  Lowell city, Weston, Massachusetts and the United States compared to the Black/African American population

This group also had a high family median income in Massachusetts, Lowell and Weston compared to the Asian populations in those regions.

However, the White people feature a lesser family median income in United States as whole compared to the Asian Population of U.S as a whole.


Poverty Level – The White population in all the selected domiciles also featured a lesser percentage of its population that are below the poverty level compared to the other ethnic races: Blacks and Asians.

Asian Only–   From the data, the Asian population  followed the White population in relation to high family median income and a lower poverty rate.

The Asian Population featured a High family median income in all selected domiciles compared to the Black/African American population.

However, Asians featured a lesser Family median income compared to the White population  in the selected domiciles.

Poverty level- Likewise, they also showed a lesser percentage of its population that are below the poverty level compared to Black/African American population in the selected regions.

Blacks/African Americans- This ethnic group features a lesser median family income in all selected region in comparison to the other ethnic groups: Whites and Asians.

Poverty Level- Like wise, they featured a higher percentage of its population that are below the poverty level compared to the other ethnic groups; Whites and Asians.


 Reasons for this  Economic Disparity Within the Chosen Towns

Historic Reasons :  From the data it is evident that the White population  has  better economic outlook.  In Lowell city, their median income was higher than the other races at  $49,759. Consequently , this was the same outlook in Weston , Massachusetts .

The possible underlying reason is that the White races are a dominant group in America. Historically, the White populations have an upper hand. They have acquired property and social networks that have ultimately been passed down to their current generation.

Note, however, that in the Asian population the median family income for United states as a whole was approximately $6000 higher than the White population. The explanation for this is relates to the next point.




The Asians population median income for United States as a whole was higher than the White population. Although the White population may have historic advantage, they lag behind the Asian population   when the United States is examined as a whole.

The Census data for year 2000 shows that the percentage of White population with a Bachelor’s degree was 16% compared to the Asian’s at 26%. This explains why the Asian population earns a little bit more on a national level.

Likewise, the Black/African American Population lagged behind with 9% of their population having a Bachelor’s degree. The result of this is evident in the numbers present in the above table. Overall the Black population earned less in all regions. They also had a high rate of poverty in all regions.

Overall, it is evident that the level of education can cause economic disparities among various groups.


Location Requirements

 Each town has its own cost of living. The cost of its housing structures and even the level of taxation.  One’s location choice is altered by Education and History.  In the town of Weston, the census Data for Black population not available.  Why? This is because Weston Median family income is high. This reflects the cost of living. The Black populations have a low Bachelor degree attainment. Hence, they are unlikely to pick Weston as a great location for living.

As a result, substantial data could not be obtained.

However, in the town of Lowell, where the median family income is lesser that Weston, it is evident that data was available for the Black population.




Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2000 Summary File 4, Matrices PCT55, PCT57, PCT58, PCT79, PCT81, PCT85, PCT86, PCT87, PCT88, PCT89, PCT94, PCT98, PCT99, PCT100, PCT101, PCT103, PCT107, PCT108, PCT109, PCT110, PCT112, PCT113, PCT130, PCT139, PCT142, PCT150, PCT151, and PCT157.


Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2000 Summary File 4, Matrices PCT55, PCT57, PCT58, PCT79, PCT81, PCT85, PCT86, PCT87, PCT88, PCT89, PCT94, PCT98, PCT99, PCT100, PCT101, PCT103, PCT107, PCT108, PCT109, PCT110, PCT112, PCT113, PCT130, PCT139, PCT142, PCT150, PCT151, and PCT157.


Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Census 2000 Summary File 4, Matrices PCT55, PCT57, PCT58, PCT79, PCT81, PCT85, PCT86, PCT87, PCT88, PCT89, PCT94, PCT98, PCT99, PCT100, PCT101, PCT103, PCT107, PCT108, PCT109, PCT110, PCT112, PCT113, PCT130, PCT139, PCT142, PCT150, PCT151, and PCT157.


White Privilege – An Advantage to some, A Burden to many

March 1, 2012

White Privilege- An Advantage to some, A Burden to many

In America, there has been an illusion of a supposed attainable equality. Social equality does not exist in America. One of the reasons for this is the presence of White privilege.

It is sometimes difficult to notice one’s own faults unless told. Likewise, an individual of the white race may not realize that he or she has certain privilege conferred because of race. However, people of other race may realize these conferred White privileges.  After conducting three Interviews with three (3) individual of the same decent, it was clear that White privileges does exist.  All responses from these individuals were very similar with one difference. This response came from two Haitian American female. The third was interviewee was a Jamaican American female.  It is worth noting that all these individuals are educated and in the labor force.

The pattern of response was more similar than different.  All three individual agreed that white privilege was well and alive in the society.  Similarly, they all agreed that white privilege is not a fair and need to be done with. Their experiences with white privilege correlated as well.   However, their suggestions for eliminating the white privilege differed.

All three interviewees reveled that white privilege existed. They all explained that white privilege is well rooted into the almost all social structures in America and that it is hard for it to be “unnoticed by a black person”  They revealed that securing a job was due to the first preference for a white individual over a non-white. Hence my interviewees suffer economically due to the presence of White privilege. My Haitian American interviewee explained that privilege was eminent at her internship site. She revealed that she could actually count the number of minority employees at her workplace. Majority of the employees there where of white descent. She explained, “It was a good internship site, so why would they hire minorities, white people come first”. Likewise the rest of the interviewee explained same situations at the place of work.   These African Americans agreed of the presence of White privilege and the woes it causes for them in the long run.  One interviewee explained that she would not dream too much of moving up at her current work place. She explained it was not because she lacked the motivation or skills but it just wasn’t foreseeable in a white dominated company. From this it is evident that that this interviewee has lost some character that she could have developed. This problem can be blamed on the white privilege that existing our economic structures.

It is evident that white privilege exists and it isn’t favored, as least by some members of the African American community. As a result, all agreed that race coded privilege should be eradicated.   This is where their difference became eminent. Two interviewees suggested that the government should get involved to control white to non-white employee ratio in every company. Although this helps a small part of the situation, they both agreed it was at least “something”. However, the other suggestion was to leave white privilege issues to time. As time goes by, social equality would gradually become a reality.

From these interviews, it is evident that white privilege exists. It affects the lives of non-white individuals, in this case African Americans. White privileges are fixed in to the economic structures. The individuals in this interview affirmed that they have to let goes some dreams and goals because of the presence of White privilege.  Sad but true.



It all officially began with the passage of the Bill: Arizona SB 1070. The United States (Arizona and supporting states) decided that it was now time to revisit history. Arizona in particular decided that using the old method of oppressing and dominating minority group was a great way to fix  a declining economy.  What did they do? They passed a bill that vividly allowed for any “suspected immigrant” to be questioned by a police officer. It allowed for illegal immigrant to carry documentation as all times. The bill examined in whole   shows even more oppressing and restricting rules for immigrants in the Arizona state.  Arizona wasn’t alone. The state of Alabama followed in pursuit with HB – 56 which prohibited Illegal immigrant from using public resources hence barring them from obtaining any assistance for education. It seems that oppressing and dominating minority groups is making a legal comeback.

How are these bills making way for oppressing and dominating certain groups? Oppression involves the use of power in a forceful way by one group over another group through the use of economic, political, social and legal structures. The state of Arizona has a high population of Hispanics, both legal and illegal immigrants. Sharing a border with Mexico, this is quite understandable and expected. However, this makes the passage of the Arizona and Alabama immigration laws very directed towards them.  Knowing that Hispanics in Arizona represent a high population of illegal immigrants, law enforcements will be more suspicious of individuals of this race.  How are they oppressed? Well, this has currently forced Hispanics in Arizona to extra cautious of their movements. Limiting these Hispanics movement is oppression.  This law then also becomes a social hindrance for all Hispanic, both legal and illegal.  Moreover, passing the Alabama HB law makes it difficult legal Hispanic children with American citizenship from smoothly accessing public education. This is because in many cases, the parents of these children are Illegal immigrants. It might be safer for the parents to prevent their children from accessing public education for fear the law priding into their lives. According to a publication by Huffington post, many Hispanic students were withdrawn from schools.  In Russellville, Hispanic students’ attendance drop by 2 percent after the passing of the Alabama bill.   In the long run, Hispanics illiteracy in the country will increase as a result. This is oppression at its finest in the 21 century. What better way can you overpower a minority group other than denying them education?

Clearly Hispanics do not have bestowed dominance in Arizona legal and political structures which would have allowed them to create such an oppressive structure.  However they do have a voice. The Hispanic population is revolting. They are fighting back with rallies, protests and lawsuits.  Hispanics communities are emphasizing their importance of their existence in Arizona. According to the Montgomery Advertiser, a poultry plant was shut down temporarily due to Hispanic work stoppage in Alabama. CNN politics reported large groups of protestors in the State of Arizona. Prominent member of societies, who may or may not be of a Hispanic descent have criticized these oppressive legal structures in attempt to reverse the law. According to the blogger and journalist,Teresa Puente, the mayor of California has issued a moratorium on official travel to the city of Arizona. There are even  class action law suits  against  the Arizona SB 1070 stating that it allows for racial profiling. These all some of the many ways the Hispanic and even non-Hispanic community are trying to fight these stressful legal barriers. As long as the other arm of the law allows for these fightbacks, the Hispanic community will have a way of resisting this oppression. If all else fails, then this will tell us what the future holds for the immigrant who is visibly noticed.  Life will indeed be miserable, as if it already isn’t.

We all sit in amazement as these laws are passed. Do we think of what will happen to children of these illegal immigrants? Do we think of the implication it has for Hispanics citizens of America.  Unfortunately subjecting minority groups to harsh oppressive situations is how Arizona and Alabama want to revive their economy. Maybe we should assume these law makers couldn’t see oppressive mechanisms embedded within the bills.  If not, then this is just lack of human compassion.


CNN Wire Staff. “Hundreds Protest Immigration Law in Arizona – CNN.” Hundreds Protest Immigration Law in Arizona. CNN, 25 Apr. 2010. Web. 8 Feb. 2012.  Link>.

Puente, Teresa. “Shakira Is the Latest to Protest Arizona’s Immigration Law | Chicanísima: Latino Politics, News and Culture.” Latest and Greatest from Chicagoans | ChicagoNow. 5 Nov. 2011. Web. 15 Feb. 2012. <Link>.

Hispanics Fight Alabama’s Immigration Law with Work Stoppage.” The Politics of Immigration. Web. 14 Feb. 2012. Link

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