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Current time:0:00Total duration:4:17

Discrimination individual vs institutional

Video transcript

- [Voiceover] Discrimination is differential treatment and harmful actions against minorities, the key word here being actions. And discrimination can be based on a ton of different factors including race, age, religion, and the list goes on and on. And discrimination can occur at the individual level, but it can also happen at an organizational or institutional level. So, first, let's take a look at an example of individual discrimination. So for individual discrimination you can say that this is a science professor, for example, and he does not like women so he will not let them in his class no matter what. And that's how he is. He says, "Hey, no women are allowed "to learn physics in my class." So because he is an individual person and he's acting against a certain type of people based on sex in this case, but it could have been on age, race, religion, whatever, that is individual discrimination. So he is taking action. It's him, one person. On the other hand, we have institutional discrimination. So institutional discrimination is really just an organization discriminating. It's not an individual anymore. So this can include governments, banks, schools, any sort of organization. So the example we'll look at is Brown v. Board of Education, and this was a landmark court case in 1954. And in this court case, it overturned the fact that there used to be separate but equal schools. So African-Americans and whites had to go to different schools. Well, this in fact wasn't the case and that's what Brown was saying. He was saying, "Hey, even though you're saying "there are these separate but equal schools, "that actually is not true. We're having much more "inferior service to you, and we also aren't "receiving the same education, and we're being mistreated." So that is what institutional discrimination is, and it can be done through a couple different ways. And a couple types that we'll talk about are intentional and unintentional. And this is a law so this intentional, our example. And let's look at a couple examples of how institutional and organizational policies can actually discriminate unintentionally. So, first, we'll look at something called side-effect discrimination, and side-effect discrimination is an interesting thing because it talks about how one institution or organization or sort of sector can influence another negatively. So there's many institutions if we think about it. There's economics. There's politics, government, law, business, medicine. We have all sorts, and they all are interdependent and related in some way. And that is what side-effect discrimination is saying. So if one area is sort of discriminating or doing something, it can affect another. So let's take a look at this example. So let's say in a small town it seems that an African-American man has never gotten a non-guilty verdict. So many minorities plead guilty to a lesser charge even though they may have been innocent, and they didn't think they could get off on a fair verdict in this city so they just took the lesser crime. Well, let's fast forward. They're trying to apply to a job now, and while applying to the job their criminal record comes up and the employer he has nothing. He just uses the information about the applicant's criminal record, and they don't intend to discriminate by any means. There's no ill will, but they end up doing so whether or not the individual was guilty or not, and this is side-effect discrimination. So it's unintentional. So by the criminal justice system having reached an unjust verdict, it wasn't fair at all, the potential employer is swayed in an unfair way. So that's side-effect discrimination, one institution affecting another. So a second way unintentional discrimination can occur is through something called past-in-present discrimination. And past-in-present discrimination talks about how things that were done in the past, even though they may no longer be allowed, they can have consequences for people in the present. An example would be Brown v. Board of Education. Before this verdict, African-Americans and white people had to attend different schools. So just after the decision, let's say that there's a girl and she wants to go to an integrated school now with white kids and black kids both in the same classroom but now she's clearly not, she doesn't feel welcome. She still feels mistreated, and it's still not going well for her so that's past-in-present discrimination. That's a negative attitude from the past coming forward to the present, and it causes a minority to be discriminated against unfairly.