Disparity vs Discrimination in the Justice Sysytem

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March 2013

March 2013
Disparity vs. Discrimination

In the thesaurus the phrase disparity is defined as being different, a lack of equality. Disparity refers to a difference in treatment or outcome, but one that does not necessarily result from intentional bias or prejudice. So in that we could conclude that one person’s skin and complexion is a disparity to another. The texture or color is different.

Put in this context it is meant in a way that would not cause anyone hurt feelings or to place anyone on guard. Disparity, as used above, is stated to describe something about one’s skin or complexion. There are arguments that would imply that the term disparity was the cause that brought racial discrimination to the forefront. The term disparity itself is a term that relays the message of difference as a group that is placed in front of all others . However, in our criminal justice system we have individuals that for various reasons have a dislike or distain for those who are not just like them or of the same mindset. The ‘difference’ between those who are placed in front of the others is plain and simple ignorance.

Discrimination is a way of placing people into categories, “it is the practice of unfair or unethical treatment of one person or a group of people, usually because of a prejudice based on race, ethnicity, age, sex, religion, or gender.” The way that disparity and discrimination play a part in the system is that men are different than women. If these two individuals were to commit the same crime the male counterpart would be sentenced to a longer prison term than the woman. This is where discrimination come’s into play. Depending on the circumstances they are most likely not going to be treated the same even through the course of their incarceration.

Discrimination is one of the most disturbing factors of today’s society;...
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