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Paul Sparks - Online English Lesson Plans, Lesson Material and Ideas for "Culture of English Speaking Countries Lessons" for Xiangtan Normal University...




American Social Problems

Racial Problems:
Americans are a nation of immigrants. Their ancestors are from many different parts of the world. Some came in search of a better life, whilst others were sent to America as slaves. Because there are so many different cultures and religions in America the result is sometimes conflict. There have been many periods of violence due to racial discrimination. The main violence is against the black American population.

Although legal segregation was ended in the 1960's there still exists a segregation in many areas through choice, housing is especially segregated. Many black people live in black only neighbourhoods, and do not mix with white Americans. Black neighbourhoods are sometimes referred to as "Ghettos".

America is generally known as a rich country, however about 1 in every 10 Americans lives below the national poverty line. This means that they live on incomes that the government considers too low to buy food, clothes, shelter etc. Many different groups of society live in poverty, sometimes young people, sometimes old people. Poverty leads to crime such as stealing and also leads to the spread of disease. the distribution of money in America is not equal - some people have great wealth, whilst others struggle to live.

The main social problem in America is Crime. Violent crime rises every year, with most people afraid to leave their homes in the dark, especially in big cities. Many Americans own, and carry, guns for their own protection (this is legal in America). The majority of crime is by young men, with many more black men being arrested than white.

The problem of drug abuse grows every year. There is a strong link between drugs and crime. Alcohol and drugs are responsible for many deaths on American roads, with drivers who are drunk or taking drugs. The drug problem began in the 1960's with "social drugs", but more recently has grown into the use of strong drugs. The strong drug users also spread disease through dirty needles, especially HIV / AIDS - a big problem in America. the drug problem costs the government a lot of money - because of crime, court cases, hospital treatment etc.

President Bush Announces Drug Control Strategy:
An effective strategy to combat illegal drug use in the United States is a top priority for the White House, says President Bush, because drugs "constitute a huge challenge to the very health of our nation."

Bush, unveiling his administration's national drug control strategy for 2002, spoke in Washington on February 12th about the dangers of illicit drugs and the urgent need to reduce demand for drugs within the United States while also attacking the supply of drugs from source countries. 

The goals of his new drug control strategy are "to limit drug supply, to reduce demand and to provide addicts with effective and compassionate drug treatment," Bush said. "These steps must be funded, which is why the budget I submitted to Congress calls for $19 billion to fight drug use." 

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