The First Thing We Learn In School: Colors
by Fabri on September 14, 2016 - 5:06pm
For the past 18 years of my life, I have classify human beings into “races”. Why would I categorize people with skin color? In my opinion, it was just easier and obvious until one day I realized that human classification was a whole lot more complex than I thought. In the following text, we will see how many variables can make human classification injudicious.
Since Darwin's trip to the Galápagos Islands, scientists love to classify animals into species and sub-species. However, should we do the same classification process with humans? Jared Diamond, author of the “Race Without Color” article beliefs one should not classify humans into races even if it is possible because it has brought many difficulties within our society. He argues that it shapes our views of other people, makes us believe we are different from other “races”, and is used as a reason for political and socioeconomic discrimination (para. 5). This is a reality many of us can relate to. As a Latino, I've experienced many discriminatory comments regarding my mother supposedly working as a house cleaner, however she came to Canada as a professional project manager and afterwards graduated at McGill University with a BAC in business. With time, I got used to all these comments, but what scarred me the most is the fact that these dominant groups feel the need to discriminate others in order to feel superior and powerful. However, I am not here to judge because we are humans and we seek for a feeling of belonging to a certain ethnic group or culture. This has its advantages and disadvantages. Belonging to a certain group creates comfort and security. However, it can also create a separation with other racial groups. These separations can be concretely seen with ethnic districts such as Chinatown in Montreal.
In conclusion, this idea of categorizing humans into “races” was created by our society and shouldn’t exist because it only feeds hate between human beings.
Diamond, J. (2016, Winter). Race Without Color. In A. Nouvet (Ed.), Anthropology 381-101-LA: The Myth of Race and the Reality of Racism. Saint-Lambert, QC: Champlain.