Table of Contents
The onus of fighting and reducing discrimination should be assumed by everyone in the society. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, argued that whatever affects someone directly, affects everyone indirectly. The question that everyone has to wonder is if another person has suffered injustice, what will it take for the same injustice to be committed to him? Sadly, many people don’t bother to think of such a situation. Dr. Martin Luther’s quote encompasses the whole system of biasness: A system that is neither just nor even. It is important to understand that when people are unjust and unfair the system will also be a replica of this situation. Thus, It is imperative that we all be fair to everyone for justice not to be defeated.
According to the utilitarian theory, everyone has a moral duty to act in a manner that will ensure that there is maximum ‘utility”. Utility herein means that happiness, well-being and welfare are upheld. Moreover, this theory gives principles and the scope of responsibility that one has in fighting discrimination. One principle is coming up with strategies that will address prejudice sourced by individuals and institutions. This will ensure that people learn on how to live and work without discrimination. Discrimination and prejudice are rooted in the social context and shaped in organizations or institutional structures (Branscombe et al, 1999). Such strategies will help in solving it.
In addition, the principles of ensuring that strategies which reflect on racial, linguistic and ethnic diversity in institutions are replaced with those that reflect on cooperation and equal status of people. Assumptions that are channeled to such division may create stereotypes and behavior that promotes discrimination. Thus, strategies involving cooperativeness among people of all walks of life should be appreciated. Moreover, working towards examining the similarities and the differences that exist within all races will help in solving discrimination. Such examination will improve intergroup relation because the difference and similarities will be the guideline for such relations. This will ensure that the society will be unified and all groups will have common features that cut across the line of discrimination. Positive interactions will be promoted and hence there would be no stereotyping (Williams et al, 1997).
Creating awareness on the effects of discrimination is principle that help alleviate discrimination. This is the easiest way of discouraging discrimination. People will learn about the disadvantages of discriminating against one another, and the good fruits that are brought about by equality. Creating awareness can be exercised by having seminars, publishing books and articles, having anti-hate runs and holding cultural festivals. This would raise awareness that is required for people to appreciate one another. A good example of this is holding a city-wide human rights and ethnic appreciation.
Another principle is pushing forward for an establishment of a human rights commission that will have an administrative role of ensuring that those who are caught practicing acts of discrimination are punished. Such a commission would ensure that each race and ethnic group is protected against discrimination. Discrimination can also be fought by having inter-religious functions. Religion has been one area that has promoted discrimination in the society. Having an inter-religious function in the community where all religious groups congregate would help in having mutuality and respect for one another. This would in turn lead to a unified religious community. Finally, each person should tame themselves against making remarks that are stereotypical on any race or ethnic group (Williams et al, 2003). This will create self-love for each and every group toward the other. Thus the society will have people who will share pride in the heritage with others.
Discrimination has been a great threat to peace and good relation among the members of any society. Everyone has a responsibility in ensuring that the fight against discrimination does not severe. As is evident in the utilitarian theory, fighting discrimination is a communal work because when a society is at peace with each other, it will be united. This will ensure that there is positive growth economically and socially.
- Williams, D. R., Neighbors, H. W., & Jackson, J. S. (2003). Racial/ethnic discrimination and health: findings from community studies. American Journal of Public Health, 93(2), 200-208.
- Williams, D. R., Yu, Y., Jackson, J. S., & Anderson, N. B. (1997). Racial differences in physical and mental health: Socio-economic status, stress and discrimination. Journal of Health Psychology, 2(3), 335-351.
- Branscombe, N. R., Schmitt, M. T., & Harvey, R. D. (1999). Perceiving pervasive discrimination among African Americans: Implications for group identification and well-being. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 77(1), 135.