Prejudice and Racism in Society

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Wars have been waged, people have died, and relationships have been destroyed all in the name of freedom from persecution. Even after grotesque amounts of destruction and blood shed just to live a normal life, groups all around the world are still persecuted for their differences by those in society who are ignorant enough to believe that their way of living must be the only correct way to live. Through broadening our mindsets and being open to the possibilities of various styles of proper living, the world’s population can become more unified. Prejudice and racism are a significant part of society, but they can go away in the future through stripping power and meaning from the derogatory words that plague our world and from our parents being more accepting, they can teach us their accepting ways, and through passing acceptance down to future generations, it can be amplified. Prejudice is incurred by the hate we feel towards people whose customs and behaviour differ from our own; the fear of the unknown is the basis of all prejudice. Words are only powerful if we give them meaning, therefore, prejudice and racism are only powerful if society defines the fuel of racism. When Atticus states, “It’s never an insult to be called what somebody thinks is a bad name. It just shows you how poor that person it, it doesn’t hurt you,” (Page 108, Lee) it exemplifies his refusal to put stock in derogatory slang because he knows that only uneducated people would use such language whilst discussing the behaviour of another human being. Atticus told Scout and Jem that being called a “nigger-lover” does not matter because it has no meaning to Atticus. If this mentality was present throughout the entire world, the amount of prejudice would decrease drastically. If we are taught that people who are different from us are bad, the cycle of hate will continue and mutate into something

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