top of page

The Irritating: Racial Disproportion in Jackson, Mississippi

Racism and environmental damage are two issues that have long been intertwined in American history. Unfortunately, this is particularly evident in Jackson, Mississippi, where the black community has been disproportionately impacted by both. According to the United States Census Bureau, the population of Jackson is approximately 80% black. This means that most of the city's residents are descendants of slaves (DOS) who have historically been marginalized and disadvantaged. This includes facing systemic racism in education, employment, and healthcare. Furthermore, the environmental impact on the black community of Jackson has been significant. In 2019, the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality released a report showing that the city's air quality is among the worst in the country. The report highlighted that the levels of particulate matter in the air exceeded the Environmental Protection Agency's guidelines, which can have profound health implications, particularly for those with pre-existing conditions such as asthma, diabetes, and high blood pressure. The environmental impact on the black community in Jackson is compounded by many black residents living in poverty. According to a report by the Mississippi Low-Income Child Care Initiative, approximately 36% of black children in Mississippi live in poverty, compared to only 10% of white children. This means that many black families in Jackson do not have the financial resources to protect themselves from environmental hazards or relocate to safer areas. One example of this is the dumping of toxic waste in black communities. In 2018, the EPA found that a company had been dumping hazardous waste in a predominantly black neighborhood in Jackson for years. This resulted in soil, groundwater, and air contamination, risking residents' health. The company responsible for the dumping was eventually fined, but the damage to the community had already been done. The impact of environmental damage on the black community of Jackson is not limited to the immediate health effects. There is also a long-term impact on the economic well-being of the community. Property values decline as the environment degrades, making it harder for families to build generational wealth. This is particularly problematic for black families, who have historically faced systemic barriers to economic mobility. Not only that, but the black American residents of Jackson, Mississippi, have long been the victims of unfair treatment by their government. The city's water has been polluted, and its garbage disposal program has ended, leaving the residents with few options for proper waste management. This situation has had devastating consequences for the community, and it is time for action to be taken to rectify this injustice.

The issue of water pollution in Jackson, Mississippi, has been ongoing for years. In 2016, the city's water supply was contaminated with lead, a dangerous toxin that can cause serious health problems, especially in children. Despite calls for action, the city government has been slow to address the issue, leaving many residents with no choice but to continue using the contaminated water. The city's decision to end its garbage disposal program has exacerbated the situation. Many residents have resorted to burning trash or simply dumping it in the streets without access to proper waste management services. This has led to a buildup of garbage and a proliferation of rats and other vermin, creating a serious public health hazard. The impact of these issues has been felt most acutely by the black residents of Jackson, who comprise most of the population. The lack of access to clean water and proper waste management services has disproportionately affected these communities, leading to higher rates of illness and other health problems. This unfair treatment of the black residents of Jackson, Mississippi, is unacceptable. Access to clean water and proper waste management services are fundamental human rights. The government is responsible for providing these services to all its citizens, regardless of race or socioeconomic status. To address this issue, the city government must take immediate action to restore its garbage disposal program and address the issue of water pollution. This will require a significant investment in infrastructure and resources. Still, it is a necessary step towards ensuring that all residents of Jackson have access to the essential services they need to live healthy and productive lives. Furthermore, community leaders and activists must continue raising awareness about this issue and pressure the government to act. This can be done through organizing protests, contacting elected officials, and sharing information through social media and other platforms. The unfair treatment of the black American residents of Jackson, Mississippi, is a grave and persistent irritating injustice that must be addressed. Access to clean water and proper waste management services are fundamental human rights that must be provided to all citizens, regardless of race or socioeconomic status. It is time for the city government to be held accountable from a federal standpoint and forced to act where perhaps the community may stand together to demand change. Racism and environmental damage are serious problems that needed to be addressed yesterday.

The fact that black residents are disproportionately impacted by environmental hazards is unacceptable, and action needs to be taken to ensure they are protected from harm. This includes holding companies accountable for their actions, investing in environmental cleanup efforts, and addressing systemic racism that has led to the marginalization of the black community. Jackson, Mississippi, is a template for how Black Americans who live in poverty in the so-called most remarkable country on the face of the planet are treated by their local, city, and federal governments.

5 views0 comments


bottom of page