How Diversity Either Strengthens or Weakens a Society, Essay Example
Diversity plays a major role in many countries today. Many people and communities from various cultures and social backgrounds have come together and living in harmony. Such communities in most cases have had a past full of conflicts and disagreements. The aim of this paper is to review the effects diversity in the society, and the case study here will be America. The study will analyze two articles, “America: the multinational society” by Ishmael Reed, and “Beyond black and white” by Hopkins Dwight.
History of America begins back in the days of slave trade and colonialism. Many people the Asians, the Africans and others were taken to America as slaves. Ishmael reed in his article, America; the multinational society, tells of how the country grew from a small nation to a large super power. In his opinion, he prefers people to regard America not as a country of western civilization but as a multicultural community where people live in harmony despite their tribe, color or ethical background. He goes further and argues that in the European history, Africans and Asians have been living in many countries hence forming part of them. Thus calling themselves the western civilization would not be appropriate since there are millions of Europeans having African or Asian origin.
Through diversity, people learn to correlate positively and live in harmony with one another. This eliminates the selfishness that comes because of social belonging. Members of diverse social backgrounds often meet and begin appreciating each other. The US president Barrack Obama is an example of diversity product. Despite being a black American, he still got votes to be the president of the world power state. Logically, the Americans could have preferred their own fellow white man, but because of diversity of the blacks and white from various origins, people appreciated him and saw him suitable for the job. The above illustration depicts the positive correlation that is brought about by diversity hence leading to a great social impact. Because of his election, many countries claim ancestral relationship with him, a factor that greatly unites people.
Through social diversity, many professionals interact and exchange their skills within the social setting. For instance in the case of American development, immigrants who were medical professionals upon interaction with the Native Americans led to development of a stream of professionals in the same field. Such interactions ensure exchange of skills as well as people learning from one another. Such levels of interactions can lead to professionalism that is likely to benefit and strengthen the society. Other professionals include lawyers, accountants, and skilled soldiers among others.
Moreover, the social diversity helps in economic and social development of a nation. Interaction of people with various knowledge and skills help in emergence of job opportunities and as well as strong economic development in the social setting. For instance, a community having art and design skills can interact with a community that ventures much in barter trade. The interaction of these two communities leads to emergence of many job opportunities as well as development of new skills. They will learn from each other hence opening many developmental doorways for them in the social setting. Another good instance is the American development; since it comprises of people from various cultural, racial and political backgrounds, people tend to share their skills hence creation of more job opportunities as well as a conducive economic environment for growth. Over the years, American economy has appeared to be the most stable worldwide despite various fluctuations in the global market.
A number of social weaknesses accrue owing to interaction of different cultures besides the benefits that the society derives from diversity. Some of these largely depreciate the cultural attributes that a society has developed over a long period. Some of the weaknesses include the following:
Through diversity, culturally unacceptable practices may slowly creep into a given society. Such include immorality, sodomy and idol worship which in other societies are considered unacceptable. The interaction of people coming from such a corrupt background can easily lead to influence on the social lifestyle. In America, many social unacceptable practices are rampant since people of diverse cultures have met and interacted. Through these interactions, the innocent citizens learn of the wicked ways and adopt the undesirable cultures. This accounts for the number of criminal activities as well as formation of illegal gangs and drug use among others. These are not only depreciating communal factors, but also affects the lives of the concerned individuals negatively.
Hopkins also echoes the nature of this multicultural society in the article “beyond black and white.” Here, the author talks about the manner in which many black Americans are celebrating the fact that one of them is in office. Hopkins describes how many friends and colleagues across the globe have been writing to him and informing him of the manner in which they are related to the president. It is much of a surprise the manner American society today live in peace despite their multicultural system that is in place.
Other impacts include social discrimination of a given group of people. This comes in where people of diverse social backgrounds interact and one group feels superior to the other. The superior group will discriminate the minor group hence leading to constant conflicts among them. In the American case, there was a constant wage of war between the blacks who were considered slaves and the whites who appeared superior. As a result, conflicts have emerged between the whites and the black Americans who wish to be treated equally like the rest. In the heart of such discrimination, Martin Luther king was prompted to write his “I have a dream” speech, where he narrated how he dreams that one day the blacks and the whites will be treated equally. This dream came true through the election of the black president Barrack Obama despite the opinion difference between the republicans and the African Americans.
The arguments above prove that diversity has a great impact in any given society, both positive and negative impacts. The nature of impact however largely depends on the nature of people forming the diverse community. If they are bad people, then there are possibilities of corrupting the existing social system, in case, the interacting group consists of good people, then the impact will be positive.
The impact of this multicultural diversity in America has been positive and has greatly united the American people. This is a great sign that multicultural diversity can change a nation and make it very successful. Today in America, even the black and whites can sit down and declare their joy of having one of their own in white house. All these, as stated by Hopkins are a product of multicultural diversity.
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