Gender, Race and Ethnicity
Race, gender, and ethnicity are factors that have considerably contributed to the shaping of my behaviour and life in general. In the United States, more attention is given to race. Nonetheless, these are all socially constructed concepts, which date back to the historical times. As a girl, my gender has had various impacts on my life. Similarly, being white has had various implications in my interactions. On the other hand, with regard to ethnicity, I have always preferred to be just plain American, since I do not prefer to be identified by my ethnicity, which I draw from my parents. Nonetheless, this has worked well, since in the United States, and being white, much emphasis is not put on ethnicity (Healey 4). Overall, drawing from my past life experiences, my gender and race are aspects have influenced my life in more positive than negative ways.
With regard to my race, I believe being white in the United States is a privilege, since whites are the majority population. Therefore, I have not experienced any form of discrimination from other races. The minority population in the United States, comprising of most non-whites, have reported differential treatment and considerable forms of discrimination (Healey 4). I have had the opportunity to make friends from other races, including African Americans, Hispanic, among others. This level of diversity in my interactions is based on the race aspect. Nonetheless, this has enabled me to learn how to interact with different races, and understand them. This has therefore, developed me in a positive way.
Gender has had considerable influence in my life, especially with regard to my self-esteem. Since my young age, I grew up knowing that boys were stronger and more influential than girls. At home, my father made important decisions and was the main breadwinner in our family. This made me attach more power to the male gender. My brothers would tease me while we were growing up, and I would not hit back, since I was convinced they were stronger than I was. Similarly, in my early educational years, I would not feel bad if my brother beat me in a test, since I considered boys to be more intelligent. This therefore, resulted in my low self-esteem whenever I took the same challenge with boys. However, today through more education, I am knowledgeable about gender, therefore, I am aware of my capabilities as a girl.
There are different stereotypes that other races have about American girls. Most of the people new in America, from conservative races such as India believe that it is easy to flirt with white girls. Probably, this is because of the portrayal of white girls in white films. On the other hand, the males in the United States consider white girls independent as they choose how to act without being controlled. The belief held by Indians is wrong, and just a stereotype. However, the belief that white girls have an independent thought process is quite true.
Today, most of the world countries have prioritized the issues of women. Women are entitled to more privileges than men, since these are considered to have been sidelined by men in different developmental issues. Therefore, as a woman, I feel positive about myself, therefore, set more goals, which will help me achieve my dreams, while making use of the different opportunities provided to women today.
Today, there is enough evidence showing inequalities based on gender, ethnic, and racial differences. These three aspects of gender, race, and ethnicity influence people in various ways. In my case, these have shaped my life in a positive ways, as I have learnt to learn from the challenges these might present to me. However, these factors might influence some people in a more negative manner, which might have adverse effects in their life. Therefore, it should be a collective responsibility of individuals and concerned authorities, to ensure that the aspects of gender, race, and ethnicity contribute to equality and development in society.
Healey, Joseph. “Diversity and society: race, ethnicity, and gender.” New York: Pine Forge
Press, 2010. Print.
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