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Racism kills, quite literally, by stressing black people out

The American Psychological Association has been bringing special attention to the detrimental effects that racism and discrimination brings to the lives of African-Americans. Given the recent attention and focus given to the Eric Garner and Tamir Rice situations, it makes sense that a number of black people would suffer from the stress of dealing with, well, everything. Comedians jokingly refer to it as post traumatic slavery disorder, but it’s a real thing.

The Atlantic already wrote about how New York City’s “Stop and Frisk” policy is contributing to a national health issue. The mere anticipation of racism is enough to cause harm in terms of stress, to a black person.

“racial profiling is not only a danger to a person’s legal rights, which guarantee equal protection under the law. It is also a danger to their health.

A growing literature shows discrimination raises the risk of many emotional and physical problems. Discrimination has been shown to increase the risk of stress,depression, the common cold, hypertension, and breast cancer — amongst other problems. Recently, two journals dedicated entire issues to the subject. These collections push us to consider how discrimination becomes what social epidemiologist Nancy Krieger, one of the field’s leaders, terms ’embodied inequality.'”