Racism is the discrimination of a person due to the difference of ideologies, creed and beliefs. The United States has several cultures brought about by the availability of different nationalities. This in turn results in a community that has people of all walks of life. Culture is a way of life and is reflective of the values and norms that people uphold. Most of the cultural values are passed from generation to generation making them have sentimental value to the life of an individual. Having a culturally diverse country has advantages and disadvantages to its growth and sustainability. One of the advantages is the interaction of the different cultures so as to create awareness of the diverse cultural practices. One of the disadvantages on the other hand is the formation of divisions brought about by the supremacy of some cultures. This brings about discrimination against cultures due to the lack of respect and recognition of the culture in question. There are several forms of discrimination which is triggered by the hatred for the different groups people identify with (Iacobbo and Michael, p. 241).
The focus of this paper is to provide an analysis of racism related to religion and ecology. The paper looks at the two forms of racism and their effects on society. This is done by the provision of various positions relative to the topic at hand. The paper describes anti-vegetarian arguments that opposes or proposes the validity of the claims.
Religion is an essential aspect in the lives of majority of the population. Religion is defined as a belief in superior being. All religions have a God who is said to be the creator of all that is living. This is one of the features that make the superior being and significant part of a believer’s life. There are several religions in present society that dictate on the way of life of a particular society. Religion often preaches the practice of respect, love and truth amongst people in the immediate surrounding. This factor alone shows that the practice of a religion should improve the value of an individual’s life. This however is not the case in that religion is responsible for some of the inhuman acts known to man. Religion is also related to racism due to the superiority of some of the creeds. This notion has triggered a number of arguments that either support or argue for the statement (Olson, p. 298).
The southern part of the United States is known for their predominant practice of Christianity and the observation of the Christian faith. An enormous amount of the population are said to make significant choices based on Christianity. People in this area are therefore expected totreat their neighbors as they would like to be treated. The countries history displays a different dynamic in that the south is to date one of the most racist parts of the country. The practice of slavery involves the use of slaves for the cultivation and production of commodities such as sugar and cotton. This form of treatment went on for a considerable period of time making the African Americans subject to the needs of the whites. The occurrence of the Civil War was monumental to the country due to the change of some of the policies both economic and social. Amongst these policies that was reviewed was the banning of slave trade and freeing of the slaves from their white masters. Some parts of the country were more receptive to the change of the laws while others were on the offensive. This led to the formation of groups such as the KKK (Ku Klux Klan). The KKK was an association that comprised of white supremacists whose role was to wipe out all the inferior races. This was intended to make the white race pure from “evolving” races such as that of the Africans. It is significant to note that the association had deep connections to the Christian church and stated on several occasions that their activities were in honor of the teachings of the Christian religion. Most racist organizations hide behind the excuse of the church and religion while committing the same offenses that the Bible prohibits (Rader, p. 377).
Another example of racism was seen during the ousting of the Jews from Germans. This event is referred to as the holocaust and is marked as the time when a large percentage of the Jews were massacred at the hands of Hitler’s army. The Jews were persecuted because of their religious belief by the Christians in the country. The Germans used the excuse that their religion was of a higher status compared to that of the Jews. This shows that the belief of one’s religion has been used to persecute other races that do not share the same ideologies (Reinders, p. 245).
The fight between Islam and Christianity is has been going on from time immemorial. Most of the clashes cannot be recorded due to the centuries that have passed from the inception of the deferent religions. Christianity and Islam are one of the oldest religions in the world. Islam is predominant in the Middle Eastern part of the world while Christianity is predominant in the western part of the world and some parts of Africa. Christianity gets its roots from the Middle East due to the location of Israel. This however is one of the reasons for the conflict between the two parties who claim to own the city of Nazareth. Nazareth is pivotal to the culture of the two sides in that they both have religious buildings in the location. Both Muslims and Christians have as a result resulted in discriminating on each other. This is owed to the argument that both religions have the claim to the holy city. This misunderstanding has led to the constant fights between the two sides of the boarder. It is also responsible for the highest number of deaths brought about by the racism that is displayed by extremists in both religioussides (Olson, p. 314).
Racism can also be related to ecology and the environment. This is not the most common form of racism because most racism cases are associated with the color and religious beliefs of an individual. One of the arguments that have taken place in this area is the anti -vegetarian verses the pro-vegetarian argument. Vegetarians are people who chose to eliminate the intake of animal meat and animal produce. Most of the foods are tailored to compliment the nutrients that are available in animal products. Some of the examples of vegetarian food are tofu and soya milk which are vegetables in nature but take on the role of dairy products. Some vegetarians choose to be extreme by living a vegan lifestyle. This diet concentrates on observing all foods and drinks in relation to the content of animal produce they contain (Olson, p. 215).
Vegetarians believe that eating meat is repugnant to the life of animals. Removing all forms of meat produce from their diet is not only a way of life but is sentimental to their love of animals. It is difficult to live this kind of lifestyle due to the expense that comes with the observation of the strict dietary laws. Some vegetarians have to go as far as announcing their vegetarian status in advance so as to reduce the inconvenience that comes with the trade. This has in turn generated discrimination towards vegetarians by non vegetarians. One of the arguments made by the anti vegetarians is that vegetarians claim that eating meat is murder while they too sacrifice the lives of plants. Most vegetarians face discrimination by their carnivorous rivals who insist that there is nothing wrong worth eating meat as long as it is done in the most humane way.
Vegetarians on the other hand maintain that human beings should refrain from the consumption from all animal related products by supplementing their diet with plant products. This also applies to the use of materials and cloth made from animals such as fur. Some of the points that vegetarians bring out are valid to some extent. The population of animals continues to reduce at the hands of careless human beings. This is seen through the mistreatment of the animals from the time of their birth to the time of their slaughter. Proper regulation of the consumption of meat should thus be encouraged so as to improve the living standards of the animals (Rader, p. 143).
Vegetarians are classified into various categories depending on the type of food they eat and the belief they stand for. Some individuals have joined organizations that fight for the conservation of trees so as to sustain the climate change. This cause is significant for the survival of all living things in that climate change can be hazardous to the livelihood of plants and animals. Some of the organizations are known to be extreme in their protest to the extent that they endanger the life of the offender. Some of these people have earned themselves titles such as tree huggers in that they risk their life for the safety of the tree. Passionate crusaders have on record climbed on top of the trees in protest of the destruction of forests. Extremists are also known to be violent towards the tree cutters and animal’s eaters in their protests (Porphyry and Clark, p. 167).
One of the most extreme groups known for its fight against the wrongful treatment of animals and plants is PETA. PETA is responsible for the rescue of more than one million animals annually through various supporters and well-wishers. The group dedicates its objective on creating awareness of the wrongful treatment and exploitation of animals by human beings. This is done through the use of extreme protests that involve lashing out during the fashion shows or releasing animals in the laboratories. This has on some occasions resulted to the violence between the two groups who both claim that their ideologies are correct.
Vegetarians believe that people who cannot control their consumption of meat should do so in the most minimalist way. This involves eating meat with the least amount of pleasure so as to show remorse of the actions. This kind of condemnation makes non vegetarians feel guilty when consuming meat. This is dubbed as racism to some extent in that people are forced to compromise on their values to fit the needs of others (Rader, p. 310).
Racism related to ecology involves the mishandling of the natural balance of the environmental features. Natural features in this case are plantsand animals who are the main holders of the environment. The lifestyles of human beings are highly dependent on that of plants and animals. Most of the foods are derived from these sources making them responsible for the growth and sustainability of the all living things. The ecosystem is organized in a way that some animals are more dominant than their peers in all aspects of life. This gives rise to the policy that argues for the survival of the fittest. Plants and animals that are consumed as a result of human demand can fall under the category of discriminated features due to their vulnerability in the environment (Iacobbo and Iacobbo, p. 315).
In conclusion, racism is one of the end products of discrimination and lack of respect of a persons, race, belief color or creed. Most of the racial practices are geared toward erasing a particular group of people. There are several agents that trigger racism against different people. Religion and ecology are some of the selected factors that have over the past influenced discrimination. The observation of the two factors is therefore ideal so as to have a proper understanding of the racism and its implications on the environment.
Iacobbo, Karen, and Michael Iacobbo.Vegetarian America: A History. Westport, Conn. [u.a.: Praeger, 2004. Print.
Olson, Laura R. Filled with Spirit and Power: Protestant Clergy in Politics. Albany, NY: State Univ. of New York Press, 2000. Print.
Porphyry, , and Gillian Clark. On Abstinence from Killing Animals. Ithaca, N.Y: Cornell University Press, 2000. Print.
Rader, William. The Church and Racial Hostility: A History of Interpretation of Ephesians 2, 11-22. Tübingen: Mohr, 1978. Print.
Reinders, Eric R. Borrowed Gods and Foreign Bodies: Christian Missionaries Imagine Chinese Religion. Berkeley [u.a.: University of California Press, 2004. Print.
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