eric homeyer - cincinnati public school student
you one in a million, or one of a million? classification causes
us to see each other as part of a group, without adding any value
to the individual opinion. classification is the breeding ground
is an individual. we all have our own minds and bodies. if every
person could just see themselves and others as individuals, then
we might have a chance at achieving equality, because you can't
discriminate against one person. discrimination is a group effort
against another group, and putting us all in seperate corners
is only going to increase cultural biases.
you see everyone as white, or black, or christian, or jew, or
muslim, or asian, or male, or female; and they're different than
you, then you as an individual will naturally consider yourself
the one with the correct view. when this is widespread, and different
groups and classifications adopt the attitude of 'us vs. them',
segregation, discrimination and racism occur.
you see everyone as another individual with the same validity
to their opinions as yours, because like you, they have a mind
of their own, then racism and discrimination cease to exist. the
color fades away, the classification fades away, and the ignorance
fades away. if you take away the classification and shed people
of their labels, all that's left is an individual, and in the
end that's what we all are. in the end, no one person matters
more than the rest.
other issues that lead to biased views and poor judgement are
first impressions, statistics, and the media. in concordance with
a point that yahnus cameron brought up at the recent forum [held
in a public school], unfortunately, first impressions are everything.
if the boy who was shot and killed [in cincinnati by police] was
wearing a suit and tie, would he still have gotten shot? this
doesn't mean that we shold all dress in uniforms and never express
ourselves again. some people are too quick to judge, and that
is not always necessary. however, such as in the case of police
officers, they rely on their quick judgement on a day to day basis
in order to survive and keep the general population safe. sometimes,
unfortunately, their judgement can be clouded by cultural biases
and classification, and they can make mistakes.
can't know every citizen on an individual basis, and sometimes
they have to go on statistics. not everything and every situation
adheres to those statistics, that's why they are fluctuating percentages,
not absolutes, and that's also why every now and then the statistics
are wrong and human error prevails. this is not meant to justify
an officers reactions to a given situation, just to give another
valid point was made by jen sese about the media. the media distorts
everything by picking out little details and turning them into
huge issues, such as one black person fighting one white person
in a crowd of hundreds of other people, white and black, who aren't
fighting each other, and this slows efforts for equality tremendously.
it further divides into groups pitted against each other by blowing
events out of proportion. if the media either becomes completely
objective, offering all viewpoints on every issue, or just completely
stayed out of issues such as this, then peace may come sooner
among the humans of the world.
conclusion, look at other people as people, because we are all
people, no matter what other groups everyone tries to put us into.
if we can separate as individuals, we can unite as humanity and
respect each other, and our opinions. validity of opinion is shared
by all and should also be accepted by everyone.
e a r e a l l e q u a l d e s p i t e d i f f e r e n c e s
the purposes of this paper, all letters are lower case.