When people think about someone who perpetuates racial discrimination, they often assume that those actions are intentional. They imagine someone who consciously wants to use their position to discriminate against another, based on race.
This is something that happens, and it is an example of racism, but it’s certainly not the only one. Even people who actively discriminate may not realize what they’re doing. And this can cause a lot of problems.
Unintentional racism and a lack of understanding
One problem is that people are often offended if you tell them that they’re acting in a racist manner. The reason that they’re offended is that they don’t think they’re doing anything intentionally, and they believe you’re accusing them of doing so.
However, unintentional racism happens all the time. It may not be a conscious effort, but it can still be harmful. This is the aspect that a lot of people do not fully understand, and it allows racism to continue to be a part of modern society.
One example of this is the role of microaggressions. Someone may think that they’re complimenting you when they’re actually saying something that is discriminatory. This can create a hostile workplace environment, even though they’re not doing something overt, like firing you for being a member of a minority group or refusing to hire you based on the color of your skin.
If you do experience racial discrimination in the workplace, even when those who are doing it deny that that’s what they’re doing, it may be time to look into all of your legal options. Racial discrimination is always illegal – intentional or not.