Personal Inquiry Reflection on Discrimination

Mar 15, 2016
by: Bryan L.
None of the pictures pertaining to the subject worked, so here's a cool picture

Is discrimination natural during times of strife and hardship? Throughout history, the human race has fought each other and has endured plague and countless horrors. During these times of suffering, humanity was at its lowest. Committing crimes and taking advantage of the hardship for their own gain. Many dictators and politicians have used times of suffering to further their own agendas, which begs the question, “Is discrimination only natural during difficult times?

During the Great Depression, a period of time in the US where stock prices reached an all-time low, unemployment was rampant, and many people were very poor with little food. In this time, colored and female workers were fired from their positions and replaced with white male workers, an example of discrimination. Was this because of the attitude most members of the American public had, or was this just a cause of the hard times that had fallen upon America? In my opinion, it was a mixture of both. The hardships of the times, coupled with the views of the time, caused employers to fire colored and female workers and replace them with white male workers.

During the interwar period in the Weimar Republic (Germany), times were tough for the German people. Due to the harshness of the Treaty of Versailles, and some incompetence from the government, the German Mark nearly lost all of its value. So much that it took a wheelbarrow of German Marks to buy one piece of Bread. You see, the Treaty of Versailles, which ended WWI, detailed, among other things, that Germany would have to pay war reparations to the Allies for the damages caused in WWI. The German government decided that they would just continuously print German Marks to pay off the debt.

Unfortunately, this hyperinflated the German Mark, breaking the everything that involved money and everyone was miserable. Then, some guy called Adolf Hitler said to the German people, that the Jews were to blame for all of Germany’s problems. The failed economy, the hyperinflation of the German Mark, the loss of WWI, every problem Germany had was blamed on the Jews. Hitler later became the dictator of Germany, passed a ton of anti-Jewish, anti-homosexual, anti-disabled, etc. laws, started a world war, instigated the Final Solution, and killed millions of people. By blaming Jews and other groups for the German people's’ problems, Hitler obtained political power. Was this due to the anti-Semitism that had buried itself in Europe since ancient times, the public’s need for a group of people to become a scapegoat to blame or a combination of both?

Through discrimination, humanity has coped with tough times, and people have taken advantage of humanity’s need for a scapegoat for all their problems. Does this mean I think discrimination is okay? No, I think discrimination is stupid and the worst idea ever invented, but is it only natural for us to discriminate? History has proven that humans seemingly have a need to put the blame on someone else. I believe, that discrimination is, for humans anyway, a survival instinct. It comes from Paleolithic times, and before that when we were still nonsentient animals, and has ingrained itself into our minds, though centuries of evolution(if you believe in evolution, I’m not saying you have to accept it as fact).