Is Discrimination Defendable Essay

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Is Discrimination Defendable? What if discrimination and prejudice are hardwired into our brains? What if it is impossible to change by just willpower? In this essay, I’m going to explore what discrimination really is and why it even may be defendable. Merriam-webster defines discrimination as a “prejudiced or prejudicial outlook, action, or treatment”, and as “the act of discriminating categorically rather than individually”. I interpret this as the act of person A judging person B based on a very arbitrary set of characteristics that have nothing to do with their skills, productivity or personality and then treating person B based on that judgment. It is the act of categorizing people into groups and then treating some groups different…show more content…
First of all, you have to consider to what degree this reaction actually is the judgings person's intention or fault. With some basic evolutionary understanding, you can explain why it is very logical and understandable to act this way. Humans evolved in a time where close relationships were essential for survival, and where if you weren’t careful with whom you trusted you ended up dead. This, of course, should not be an excuse for bigoted behavior, but it could be an explanation for prejudice. Rosabeth Moss Kanter manages to capture this argument by saying: “Some social scientists say that in-group/out-group biases are hard-wired into the human brain. Even without overt prejudice, it is cognitively convenient for people to sort items into categories and respond based on what is usually associated with those categories: a form of statistical discrimination, playing the odds.” The opinion that discrimination to some extent might be hard-wired into our brains is controversial and is in strong contrast to the usual argument that discrimination is based on culture. The contrast is very clearly illustrated with this quote by Charlotte Bunch: “Sexual, racial, gender violence and other forms of discrimination and violence in a culture cannot be eliminated without changing

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