Written By:- Richa Patel || Graphics By:- Khushi Arora
Racial discrimination is when a person is treated less favorably than another person in similar situations just because of their race, color, nation, or ethnic origin. Racial discrimination is one of the common practices worldwide. It is such a common practice that most of the time they don’t even realize that racism is practiced. People experience racial discrimination in different ways. It occurs as a result of stereotyping, prejudice bias. There are two kinds of racial discrimination. They are- Direct Discrimination and indirect discrimination. Both of them systematically function in educational institutions.
HOW DOES RACISM work
In Western countries, black students are still oppressed just because of their race. They are not given equal opportunities as white students and even the educators themselves perform racism. For generations, the black community worldwide is facing racial injustice, referred to as immigrants. The blacks now have a voice so they are asking for professional and personal acceptance. This is a harsh reality of our society that still our education system don’t welcome students from diverse communities wholeheartedly. They think that these students can’t respect education, they are not made to do that. People still believe in the caste system and believe that caste hierarchy was for good cause. So, they look down on the oppressed ones who are struggling to make educational institutions a comfortable place for their community too.
RACISM IN INDIA
Racial prejudice in India is a legacy of the caste system. Still, the children of lower classes are not treated equally. The teachers don’t touch them just because they belong to a lower caste. The ‘untouchables’ or ‘Dalits’ are the most oppressed ones still they have to struggle a lot for even to have a right to life with dignity. They are not even given fair chances to study. They are not allowed to a mix-up with the children of the upper caste. This is how casteism is prevalent in India. There are many examples that show how casteism is still practiced, how the dominated classes overrule the lower classes. What I have seen personally is that the children from lower caste are abused in the name of their caste, they are criticized because of the reservation system. This makes them feel insecure about their caste and existence and even they consider their birth to be some fatal accident. The students don’t feel safe on school premises.
RACIAL DISCRIMINATION AND SOCIETY
In India, a lot of efforts are made by the government to provide equal opportunities in terms of education. Article 15 of our Constitution which talks about equality in all the circumstances of life is the soul of our Constitution. But still, Constitutional equality is mockery As racism travels in our veins as blood does. The Northeastern students are still considered outsiders. The South Indians have to go through a lot because of their complexion.
HOW TO OVERCOME RACIAL DISCRIMINATION
In our country, racial discrimination is visible in all corners of our life. A lot of affirmative actions are taken to protect the opportunities of the adversely affected. The teachers should boost the confidence of the students and not only teach them about injustice but stand by them too. Our education policy is not designed to eliminate racial inequality but to sustain it at manageable levels. We need to look into it so, schools can be a safe place for all of them. Teaching is not a political act and no neutrality should be accepted here. As this only expands the gap. Rohit Vemula’s case brought concern regarding this harassment and highlighted that how discrimination is still prevalent in our society and we as a country need to make some extra efforts. Any kind of discrimination from society will only be eradicated if we as a member of society wants to. So, we need to be more educated, more liberal, and need to question our Orthodox culture wherever needed. Our federal Constitution guarantees equality and the rights provided by our Constitution acts as a safeguard. There is a number of a human right activist who is working to level up the ground.
Racial discrimination in schools is not a new thing. Students were always given preference according to their class in society rather than the talent they have. We literally need to address this systematic racism before it devastates the mental and psychological health of the students who suffer from this. The classroom should be a place where students can be themselves, where diversity is cherished. If we will be able to fill the gap between pedagogy and students, policies and behavior things will be normal a day. The racial ideologies and structural Inequalities will only end when we will not only call ourselves anti-racist but also bring changes in our behavior. We need to work collectively to ensure that students from all backgrounds are represented.