So, imagine for a second, you are a high school student. You have joined an after school club that broadcasts the weekly school news. You come to every meeting and work hard on getting footage for the news and weather and then, after you have spent about 15 hours of collecting this, you give it to the editor and they say “great job, hope to see you on broadcast day”. But before you go you ask if you can host the weather, and the editor says “of course”. So you come in on Friday, all pumped to do the weather and you see another guy, that you didn’t think was even in the club getting set up, you ask the editor what’s going on, you are then informed that they are in the club even though they haven’t shown up to any meeting or put any work into preparing the broadcast at all and that they are going to host the weather. Then when you confront the editor and say that she told you that you could host the weather, they say “oh, that’s right, well, he’s all set up right now, could you wait until next Friday”, and you say yes because you don’t want to cause trouble. This scenario repeats itself until you bring the editors actions to the head of the club (the librarian) and they let you host the weather one time, and not again. Coincidentely, the guy that has been taking the weather hosting from you is the son of the mayor, and the broadcast club is full of his friends who also happen to have parents that work with the mayor. This is a perfect example of discrimination; you aren’t friends with anyone in the broadcast club, so you don’t get to participate on broadcast day, no matter how much work you put into it.
This situation is similar in the workplace as well. You have just finished your master’s in bio engineering and have a near perfect GPA of 3.9; you are ready to find a lab to work in. You go around to 4 different labs and over the course of 9 months, you get declined from all of them. They say that they aren’t taking on any new engineers at this point, but what they really mean is that they don’t want to hire a woman. Those 4 labs that you applied to hired men that were just as qualified for that job as you were, and you applied first. Discrimination, sadly, is everywhere and it continues even in the “equal” society we pride ourselves upon. Individuals or groups that have preconceived notions or are prejudice toward a certain groups of people will try to bar those people from participating socially in the community, and sometimes they try to control aspects of your personal life, too. Something current is gay marriage. People think that marriage is strictly between a man and a woman, but when this idea is challenged, people’s first reaction is to discriminate, instead of making informed, open-minded decisions. The homosexual lifestyle, in their eyes, deviates from what is socially accepted. Even now, states still keep gay marriage illegal, even when a number of them have legalized it. Because discrimination in not just specific to a certain group pf people, like I said, it’s everywhere. However, discrimination is not as bad is it was in the 60’s; a white police officer cannot simply shoot an unarmed black man and get away with it, oh wait, that just happened in Ferguson, Missouri didn’t it. Until people start accepting each other for who they are and not judge them for their lifestyle, skin color, gender, religion, nationality, we will never be free of prejudice or discrimination.