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Joshua Lee

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Is the language we use perpetuating the racial divide?

When I started working at the University I was asked, "Who do you relate to?" I answered unawares of their intention, "My wife." To which there was a pause... an irritated pause... ,"No, What race do you identify with?" Response, "The human race."

This only provides a small example into the plethora of ways that language contributes to how we perceive ourselves and others. This example illustrates how language shapes identity or at least perceived identity and its association with our race. It gives clues to how society contributes to a divide that no longer should exist. I believe that we can move beyond defining ourselves through race. We can rebuild ourselves through language and allow growth to truly take place.

Perhaps then a lack of opportunities wouldn't be presented as a racial issue but an economic issue, perhaps stereotypes would disappear and we would be able to characterize each other based on work ethic not racial stigmas, Perhaps we would be able to address the social issues from a less jaded perspective. Maybe now is the time that we stop making up for our ancestors mistakes and start working together as true equals.

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    Jun 29 2013: @Lamar re "
    Racism:

    1. The belief that race accounts for differences in human character or ability and that a particular race is superior to others."

    This definition is very interesting. I completely agree with it. I would go even farther to say that it is immoral to seek any scientific evidence to prove one way or the other. Despite what skeptics and rationalists say about beliefs and evidence, I think, belief that race does not account for such differences is the kind of belief that we must take "on faith" - accept without proof. It does not matter what such research may find. Would you agree?

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