Of Our Spiritual Strivings

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Our country is one supposedly based on fairness and equality; all citizens being treated with equal fairness. This is not the truth. Prejudice and inequality can be found in all societies today. People are not treated unfairly by others and, in return, treat others with the same unfairness. Most people, however unaware they may be, have been guilty of some form of prejudice. “Men call the shadow prejudice, and learnedly explain it as the natural defense of culture against barbarism, learning against ignorance, purity against crime” (p. 296).

Citizens in our country today are not all treated equally. In the work place, for example, mean are usually given more opportunity than women. Men have a better chance of getting a promotion because women are stereotyped as letting their emotions, not their professional opinion, aide them in their decision making. Also, people are given less opportunity when they do not meet certain “qualifications”. Some people are given greater responsibility because they know a certain person of higher ranking. Other people who work hard to get their job done and help others with their job are overlooked because someone else who is well known takes the credit that should have gone to the other person. “The facing of so vast a prejudice could not but bring the inevitable self-questioning, self-disparagement, and lowering of ideals which ever accompany repression and breed in an atmosphere of contempt and hate” (p. 296).

People in all societies are prejudice against someone or something. In “Of Our Spiritual Strivings”, WEB Du Bois talks about his dealings with prejudice based on race, but race is not the only contributing factor of discrimination. Someone can be discriminated against for not only their national origin, but also for their gender, their religion, or even their sexual orientation. People who are homosexual, for example, are persecuted for their lifestyle and are not allowed to marry a person of their choice. “A people...
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