Reflective Essay On Prejudice And Discrimination

1800 Words 8 Pages
After handling different kinds of work, including being a private nurse assistant and, currently, a human resource coordinator, I have to admit that I have had my share of expressing prejudice and discrimination. At the same time, as a woman and a member of the minority, I had been a victim of discrimination as well at work and social settings. I was born in the Dominican Republic and raised by Catholics, although I am not a practicing Catholic but a believer of a higher being. My culture influenced my identity and experiences. Culture, specifically the sexual division of labor and racist beliefs, have affected my perceptions as an employee and how I was treated in society; moreover, realizing my own biases has me to change myself and challenge …show more content…
Goodman (2014) defined self-awareness as "is the consciousness of our social identities, cultures, biases, and perspectives." For me, it means standing outside and looking into myself, including its darkest corners. She stressed the importance of understanding and valuing others to become self-aware. I agree and I applied this when I came across a Nigerian at work. I stopped myself from forming negative beliefs and asserted that I should treat him the same as others. Furthermore, Robbins (2009) recommended communication to create shared meaning and understanding (p. 57). He said, [I]nvesting time in communicating with others is like taking out an insurance policy against lack of understanding in the future" (p. 57). What he said affected me; if I wanted to remove my biases, I have to reach out and communicate. Inaction is an action towards bigotry. Moreover, Blanche (2015) asserted the value of empathy in producing inclusive societies. Empathy relates to inclusion and exclusion because when I fail to empathize, I may learn to unconsciously exclude other people who are different. However, if I empathize, I will feel what the other feels and become more sensitive to his/her realities and needs. A good application is at a playground when I saw some white grade-schoolers bullying an Asian, calling him “monkey.” I stepped in and said, “This behavior of bullying is unacceptable. Imagine yourself being called a monkey every day, how would that make you feel as a person? Before you say anything to anyone, ask yourselves, would I feel good if I heard them directed to me?” I know that the children will not easily adopt self-awareness and empathy methods, but at least, I finally took a step to actively addressing prejudice and correcting them on the spot. Through self-awareness and empathy, I become aware of my biases

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