Prejudice: a Worldwide Problem

Topics: Israel, Discrimination, Stereotype Pages: 4 (1440 words) Published: June 6, 2005
Prejudice: A Worldwide Problem
There is a dangerous and often deadly problem in the world today. It reaches beyond political and religious boundaries and spans across all economic and social statuses. It affects the homeless, middleclass, and the richest people in society. The problem is prejudice. In America, when we think of prejudice we often think of it in terms of Black and White. However, prejudice is much more than that. It is a broad term that can encompass things like racism, sexism, and religious persecution. The Encarta World English Dictionary defines prejudice as "a preformed opinion, usually an unfavorable one, based on insufficient knowledge, irrational feelings, or inaccurate stereotypes" and "the holding of opinions that are formed beforehand on the basis of insufficient knowledge". When I read those definitions, I have to wonder why prejudice still exists today. If it really is based on "insufficient knowledge", then it seems to me that there is no logical reason why prejudice is still so prevalent. Throughout our entire lives we are exposed to issues dealing with prejudice. In school we study history, geography, government, and psychology, and at some point in each of those subjects, the issue of prejudice is more than likely discussed. In the corporate world we attend countless classes and seminars on discrimination, and sensitivity training on issues that could be deemed prejudicial. The issues are well known and a vast amount of information is available on the subject, so how can "insufficient knowledge" and "preformed opinions" still be a factor? I believe it is because when we discuss prejudice or any other similar issue, we tend to discuss it at a societal level as opposed to a personal level. We discuss the history of prejudice and talk about things like slavery in America and Hitler's persecution of the Jews, but we never discuss the prejudice that we, as individuals, experience everyday. Certainly, no one would stand up in a...
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