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Discrimination And Disparity Essay

801 words - 4 pages

Discrimination and Disparity
S Fraser
June 9, 2011
Cultural Diversity Issues in Criminal Justice

Discrimination and Disparity
Discrimination exists in today’s society whether it is acknowledged or not; it is becoming more common and more accepted every day. It is happening everywhere, schools, churches, government, and even within the criminal justice system. Often times, disparity is a product of discrimination or vice versa. The following essay will discuss discrimination and disparities that exist within the criminal justice system as well as a contrast and comparison of the two terms.
The definition of ...view middle of the document...

Discrimination is similar to disparity but the definition is different. The definition of discrimination is a prejudiced or prejudicial outlook, action, or treatment (Merriam Webster’s dictionary 2011.) Discrimination happens a lot within the criminal justice system especially in law enforcement. Police are constantly being accused of discrimination, and there is almost always a story about it in the news. Even though society is taught to believe that justice is blind, there are numerous examples of discrimination. One of the biggest examples has been racial profiling which has also been referred to as “driving while black” since African Americans have been the number one target. In 2009 the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) released a report pertaining to racial profiling. The report was given to the LAPD who intern gave a very disappointing response (ACLU, 2009). The report showed that black and Hispanic residents are stopped, frisked, searched and arrested by LAPD officers far more frequently than white residents (ACLU, 2009). The report contained suggestions for the LAPD which were rejected by the department. Among the rejected recommendations were to have mandatory testing of all officers to determine racial bias (ACLU, 2009).
Disparity and discrimination are similar in some ways but also have many differences. For example a case of disparity might be a large metropolitan area where there are a lot of Hispanics and African Americans being arrested; however those groups are what make up most of the population. So in that case disparity does exist but it is not necessarily discrimination. Disparity usually happens when there is an unbalance which is not caused by...

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