A few days ago, a white supremacist entered an African-American church in Charleston, South Carolina, and left a bloody massacre in his wake. Nine African-American victims were murdered that day. It’s been reported that the fiendish suspect’s senseless slaughter of innocents was simply “because they were black.” This issue only serves to intensify contradictions already extant in the clash between blacks and whites in America.

Racial conflicts in the country are growing ever sharper and more acute, especially when the killings of black men by white police officers are increasingly commonplace, causing demonstrations and riots to spread rapidly. Seething beneath the surface of these events are issues of racial discrimination that have never been rooted out. In America, de facto segregation is a dirty secret that everyone knows exists but never talks about openly. Just because the law and public opinion keep it out of the limelight doesn’t mean its existence can be erased.

Racial Conflicts Growing Increasingly Intense

The year Obama was elected, it was deemed that black people had turned the tide and become masters of their own domain. In both elections, Obama won the great majority of the black vote and African-Americans were exuberant and beaming with “amour-propre” [a French word meaning self-esteem]. African-Americans held high hopes in the belief that his election would change the plight of those of African bloodlines that kept them trapped in the lower echelon of the social hierarchy. However, this turn of events deeply provoked many whites, causing them to feel that black people were now riding on top of the backs of white people. The perpetrator of the heinous crime in Charleston felt that after Obama took office, blacks were coming to steal white people’s jobs, houses and their entire world. One could say that when Obama was elected, not only did it not bridge the black-white paradigm, it has actually only served to intensify conflicts and the divide between blacks and whites in the country.

Statistics show that black people’s wealth is the lowest among any race in America, while the amount of blacks eating bread and water in a jail cell far and away surpasses that of any other race. The number of adult black males that have been arrested is 2 1/2 times greater than the number of Latinos who come from equally poor conditions. Although a black man now sits in the Oval Office, many people, especially police, still feel that there is a greater propensity for black people to commit crimes. Even if to a certain extent African-Americans now expect to enjoy a greater amount of recognition in the society in which they live due to the election of a black president, they are still growing increasingly intolerant toward the indiscriminate arrests, detainment and even shooting of their people. Because of changes in the psychology of race relations between blacks and whites, conflicts between the two groups are becoming ever more common, and the scale of the incidents ever more vast.

In reality, America’s future decline may stem specifically from black-white race relations. Deeply rooted contradictions are not something that can be solved during the terms of one or two leaders. Regardless of the Emancipation Proclamation having been added to the Constitution and regardless of last century’s sweeping Civil Rights Movement or the post-Cold War democratic “Springs,” nothing can solve the racial antagonism inherent between blacks and whites in America. Once conditions are right, the clashes will erupt again.

Due to America’s powerful economic might and lofty international status, U.S. leaders have worked through domestic and foreign policy measures to conceal and suppress racial contradictions in order to maintain lasting stability. But the color revolutions that have broken out all over the country have caused much social unrest and put the nation in a perilous position. The malignant tumor that is black-white conflict will also become the fundamental reason for black revolutions to explode across the country. Once blacks are fed up with repeatedly calling for equality and never getting it, a group of savvy and farsighted black elites just may propose the foundation of an all-black nation, while white supremacists may call for the foundation of an all-white republic. In that case, America will find itself once again fighting a civil war.