The Impact of 'Racism' on the society

Racism is the prejudice, discrimination, or antagonism directed against someone of a different race based on the belief that one’s own race is superior. It is the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics, abilities, or qualities specific to that race, especially to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races. Racism may be defined as the hatred of one person by another — or the belief that another person is less than human — because of skin color, language, customs, place of birth or any factor that supposedly reveals the basic nature of that person. Anything that might be used to discriminate against a group or an individual that is not under one’s own control falls in the domain of racism. Ethnicity, race, religion, region and language are some of the few factors that people use to discriminate against other people. It has influenced wars, slavery, the formation of nations, and legal codes.

A person that believes in the idea of racism, that humans are somehow divided into exclusive biological entities and can be termed inferior or superior to each other on the basis of certain biological traits, are leaches that are depriving our societies of countless extraordinary and brilliant individuals. People are termed incapable or unqualified for something just because of their race despite after decades and decades of research, science has been unable to provide a single concrete proof that supports these claims. Racism has existed throughout human history. From the abuse of Native Indians, “The Redskins”, to the horrifying atrocities suffered by the African Americans, “The Blacks” or “The Negroes”, at the hands of the self-proclaimed superior race, are all part of the history of this vile and abusive belief. All of these victimized groups had no other fault than to not share a skin color with other people. Racism has been employed as powerful weapons repeatedly, for encouraging fear and hatred in others in times of conflict and war, and even during economic downturns. 

Racism causes harm to those who are on the receiving end. It hurts individuals, communities and our society. People are not born with racist ideas or attitudes; rather racism is something that is learned. People often associate racism with acts of abuse or harassment. However, it does not need to involve violent or intimidating behavior.

Racism can be revealed through people’s actions as well as their attitudes. It includes all the barriers that prevent people from enjoying dignity and equality because of their race. Racism has existed in all areas and at all times where different races or cultures of humans have encountered each other. Research indicates that the places where racism is exercised often include the local neighborhoods, shops, and in the workplaces. It can emerge in other spaces such as on public transport, sporting events or at schools. Expressions of racism can also be found in media. This happens when, for example, racial groups are represented in an unfair or negative light in news reports or commentary. Many regard the lack of cultural diversity represented in media as another form of racism.

In recent years, racism has even translated to a problem online. Whether it is offensive comments on social media, inflammatory memes or hateful videos, cyber-racism has had a significant impact on the growth of racist attitudes in different ethnic groups. Those spreading such racist impulses often do so under the comfortable veil of anonymity. It is an unfortunate legacy of ancient days that humans are still inclined to judge groups by surface appearances. Therefore, it must be abated and minimized at all costs, as soon as possible, lest it halt our development even further.

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