This research is based in Jamaica and it analyzes the global problem of racial discrimination. Racial discrimination refers to the act of showing prejudice or an offensive behavior towards a person who belongs to another race. In Jamaica, racial discrimination occurs when the white community shows a high level of prejudice towards the black community or vice versa (Stone 212). The main motive of racially abusing someone is the fact that the varied characteristics that each race has gives good reason for their discrimination.
Racial discrimination is an act that can be seen in various forms. When the whites show open hatred toward the black community or when the blacks show open hatred to the white community, it is considered to be racial discrimination. Similarly, racial discrimination is evident when there is massive exploitation of a particular race by another race; it can also take the form of mass murder of a particular race by another race. Hate crimes or terrorism attacks launched against a particular race by another race is also considered as a mode of racial discrimination. In addition, racial discrimination can also be in the form of giving hate speeches against the other race or contesting for racial supremacy (Stone 212).
Jamaica is an independent country which is in the Caribbean Island. The country is regarded as one of the members of the British Commonwealth Countries. Jamaica is regarded as the third biggest island in the Caribbean. Out of the diverse population in Jamaica, the Afro-Jamaicans compose a greater number of the entire population. As per the results of the census conducted in 1991, the entire population had about 90.5 percent of blacks, 0.2 percent of whites, 1.3 percent of Indians and 0.3 percent of Chinese. People from minor descents accounted for 7.3 percent of the entire population (Miles 42).
Jamaica gained independence in 1962 and the great diversity of the population culminated into the framing of the Jamaica’s motto which says: ‘Out of Many, One People.’ The motto is supposed to mean that even though the Jamaican people hailed from different ethnicities or races, all of them should live as one united big family. However, despite the assertions of the Jamaican motto, racism has quickly crept into the nation. The white community, despite their small number, has increasingly become more racially superior over the blacks. This is considered as the biggest contribution to the modern day racial discrimination between the black and the white communities in Jamaica. The picture below shows the map of Jamaica (Miles 42).
The Global Problem
When people are separated through social partitions into classes with the aim of differential treatments, it is considered to be racial discrimination. In Jamaica, for instance, racial discrimination is so much evident in the workplace. Many employers belong to the white community, thus, when it comes to offering employment positions, the whites are given an upper hand over the black community. Alternatively, in the workplace, which is mainly dominated by the whites, the black people do not stand a good chance in terms of competing for bigger positions in the organization or getting better pay (Reilly, Kaufman, and Bodino 52).
Similarly, in social institutions racial discrimination is very evident. For instance, in schools that are considered to belong to the white community, the black students do not receive a fair treatment and vice versa. Many teachers in these schools perceive the black students as criminal minded and thus they are blamed for all the bad happenings in the school. The policemen also portray a huge element of racial discrimination in case a black person is in the vicinity of a crime scene. Several of them have been arrested or suspected to have been involved in crime yet they are so innocent. In the hospitals, the white doctors are so reluctant to attend to the black patients; normally, they find a way of blaming the blacks for spreading the various contagious diseases (Reilly, Kaufman, and Bodino 52).
The Jamaican Motto signifies the varied cultures that come from the multi-racial population and forms the basis of identifying the nation. In as much as the motto emphasizes on harmony and unity among the people, the country’s image is still soiled by increased cases of racism or discrimination with regards to color of the skin. Jamaica is a country that has a huge history in terms of coming out of slavery, yet the act of racial discrimination still proves to be an act of modern day slavery (Reilly, Kaufman, and Bodino 53).
The wide gap between the rich white community and the impoverished black community has contributed in a huge way toward the existence of racial discrimination. Many whites employ the blacks as casuals or laborers in their farms. They perceive the blacks as well efficient in doing the dirty works which require less skills or training, thus, attracting a very meager remuneration. In the modern day Jamaica, a high number of the whites have recounted on how they have been treated preferentially in several social institutions, while at the same time, several blacks have recounted on how they have been treated harshly by their white counterparts in social places. These all happen because of the notion that the blacks are poor people and, thus, disadvantaged in the society. On account of this, the blacks have begun to fight back in order to prove their worth in the society. With the increasing cases of racial discrimination in Jamaica, the black people are the majorly affected. As a result, quite a number of them have resorted to actions such as bleaching their bodies so as to lighten their skin color. A majority of the blacks have succeeded in getting acceptance by the whites as a result of bleaching (Reilly, Kaufman, and Bodino 53).
The conflict between the dark skinned and the white skinned has proved to be a major global catastrophe. It has disentangled the unity of Jamaica due to the fact that the whites perceive the blacks as their enemies while at the same time, the blacks perceive the whites as their enemies and their main stumbling block to triumph. In consequence of this, the gap between the whites and the blacks has increasingly widened and in certain towns the whites and the blacks do not see each other eye to eye. Racial discrimination has also found its way in politics, whereby a potential candidate for a leadership position can fail to clinch the leadership position because of his or her racial orientation. For instance, a black candidate who is vying for a political position in a region mainly dominated by the whites can find it very hard to clinch that position especially if the opponent is white (Reilly, Kaufman, and Bodino 53).
Consequently, racial discrimination has also found its way into the religious field. The black people do not want to go to churches that are dominated by the white people and the white people are too reluctant to go to churches dominated by the blacks. This has caused the people to be divided along religious lines, thus, further fuelling additional tensions and pressures. Besides, racial discrimination is also evident in the field of sports whereby some games are set aside for the white community while other games are dominated by the black community. In games such as soccer, the blacks refuse to mix with their white counterparts, thus, the whites are highly prejudiced when it comes to getting a position in a soccer game. Actually, many sporting clubs are owned by the rich white people, and in many instances, the blacks find it very hard to gain membership in these clubs (Reilly, Kaufman, and Bodino 54).
Solutions to the Global Problem
Racial discrimination is a major vice in the society. Several measures have been put in place by various non-profit organizations with the aim of eliminating this vice. It is very beneficial when the racist activities are shut off completely so as to promote peaceful co-existence of the people in the society. Peace Corps is one of the non-profit organizations that preach peace and tranquility with the aim of eliminating racial discrimination. They hold the view that showing hatred toward somebody with regards to his or her racial origin is a sin and is contrary to Christian values. They further elaborate that every person should emulate Jesus Christ who never discriminated anybody and loved His enemies equally. Therefore, every person should change his or her heart so as to be friendly to the others; this aims at promoting peace and tranquility in the society. The Peace Corps, therefore, aim at fostering peace in the churches through preaching and conducting sermons with the belief that people will change their hearts (Peace Corps 2011).
The United Nations, through UNICEF, have come up with a cause named ‘International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination.’ The day is observed on 21st March of each year. On such a day, there are various events or activities aimed at creating awareness that racial discrimination is a backward behavior and should actually be a thing of the past. In addition, people are reminded to observe and stick to their role of abolishing anti-racial behaviors in the society. The events and the activities that take place on this day aim at encouraging the people, especially the young ones to speak out in one voice, to battle racial discrimination, and to promote peaceful and friendly co-existence among the diverse population. Various United Nations leaders all over the world also speak out on this day and their messages is also aimed at promoting peace and harmonious existence by the members of the society (United Nations 2010).
The World Bank has also contributed towards eliminating racial discrimination through funding various causes that aim at eliminating the vice. In Jamaica, the various movements that are spearheaded by non-governmental organizations so as to fight racism have been funded by the World Bank Group. The top management of the World Bank have also aired their voice against the rising cases of racism and called upon the various leaders to take the step to organize programs or activities that enhance peaceful co-existence among the diverse members of the society. A person should not, therefore, be looked down upon on the basis of his or her racial origin.
According to Ashoka, the previous emperor of India, racial discrimination is regarded as a social evil and should be eliminated at all cost. Ashoka played a vital role in fostering unity among the people through his religion as a Buddhist. He developed several doctrines that were practiced by his followers regardless of their race. His teachings concerning racial discrimination pertained to how the vice could lead to war if it was left unattended to, thus, the fight against racial discrimination starts with every single individual. It is upon the individual to realize the magnitude of the problem and come up with quick solutions to counter it. No individual should look down upon the other because of his or her racial orientation (Krause and Knight 63).
Racial discrimination contributes to the moral decay of the society. When it is allowed to persist, much hostility and tension could arise among the warring members of the society. It is very beneficial to exist peacefully with all the members of the society regardless of their race. Various non-profit institutions have spearheaded programs in Jamaica to combat racial discrimination as a result of the urgency of the matter.