Article first published as Diversity: Harmful Effects Of Discrimination- Part 1 on Technorati.
Since the subject is a complex one, I will divide it into parts, this being the first one.
Disclaimer: I do not condone the actions mentioned in this post or any violent action, I am totally opposed to violence. I try to shed light on how we can either avoid or diminish the causes that lead to such tragedies.
April 2009: a naturalized immigrant, Jiverly Antares Wong (aka Jiverly Voong), entered the American Civic Association immigration center in Binghamton, New York and shot numerous people inside. Fourteen people were ultimately confirmed dead, including the shooter, and four were wounded. Reason: Wong perceived years of persecution from the police authorities against him.
May 2009: A Wesleyan University student was killed by a Caucasian 29 years old, just because the student was Jewish. The killer made entries in his journal that it is okay to kill Jews and go on a killing spree. Reason: prejudice, hate and discrimination.
March 2010: Arunya Rouch (Thai immigrant) shot Gregory Janowski and tried to shoot several other employees in the store before police shot her at Publix in Tarpon Springs. Reason: Rouch snapped after 2 years of harassment by the victim.
April 2010: Marked the 11th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre. Reason: the shooters snapped after being bullied and harassed.
June 2010: Thomas Gary Kelley shoots Juan Varella in AZ (3rd generation native born US-citizen) calling him a wetback. Reason: prejudice, hate and discrimination.
August 2010: 34-year-old gunman Omar Thornton (African American) shot and killed 8 people then killed himself at Connecticut Shooting: Hartford Distributors. Reason: Thornton snapped after feeling discriminated against and humiliated, though the company claims that he was fired due to stealing.
Horrifying events that left many parents childless or many children parentless. What do these incidents all have in common (beside the fact that some mental issues have to be considered)? The reasons why these people are pushed over the edge and snapped. Perceived reasons such as discrimination, racism, persecution and harassment.
In a world where boundaries and barriers between countries are disappearing and a fusion of multiple cultures is bringing a global world together, it is crucial to understand the impact of individual, cultural, racial, and other differences.
Although our attitudes, principles and beliefs promote and praise individuality, and self-expression and discourage conformity, we continue to differentiate, prejudge, stigmatize and discriminate on the basis of color, race, gender, religion, sexual orientation, nationality, education, socio-economic class, and physical and mental capabilities.
Over the last two decades, a growing number of social scientists have seriously investigated the impact of discrimination, and suggest that being subjected to discrimination in any form can trigger a range of negative feelings and reactions in its target, including, but not limited to:
1. Identity problems
2. Low self-esteem
3. Depression & psychological distress
4. Hypertension and elevated heart rate activities
5. Exaggeration of perceived prejudice or stereotype
You can read part two of this article here.
Diversity starts at home.
Diversity Consultant – Social Media Strategist
Sahar Consulting, LLC.
Let’s connect on:
My Diversity Cafe Technorati blog: Diversity: Harmful Effects Of Discrimination – Part 2