Disparity And Discrimination Essay

1024 words - 4 pages

Disparity and Discrimination PAGE 5
Running head: DISPARITY AND DISCRIMINATIONDisparity and Discrimination EssayJolene J. OrlowskiCultural Diversity in Criminal Justice CJA420University of PhoenixInstructor Kevin DziobaJuly 8, 2007Disparity and Discrimination EssayIn today's American criminal justice system there is supposed to be equal rights, due process, and fair and equitable treatment for all. However, many statistics reflect that there are still issues of disparity and discrimination when professionals within the criminal justice system are dealing with the public. The following pages will not only contrast the differences between disparity and discrimination as they relate to the criminal justice system , but will also address how disparity and discrimination plays a big part in law enforcement, court procedures, and correctional facilities.The difference between disparity and discrimination are best described when their definitions are split up separately. Disparity is defined by Microsoft Encarta Dictionary (2007) as "a lack of equality between people or things." Discrimination is defined by Microsoft Encarta Dictionary (2007) as "treating people different through prejudice: unfair treatment of one person or group, usually because of prejudice about race, ethnicity, age, religion, or gender." The difference is in the treatment of the person and whether or not there is bias portrayed or not. For example, disparity could be described as a situation when one person has 20/20 vision and another has 20/10 vision, of course the 20/10 person would see things at farther distances and would therefore have better eyesight, making the 20/20 person have a visual disparity when compared to the 20/10 person. Disparity is just another word for difference.In the criminal justice system disparity is commonly associated with race, ethnicity, or sometimes income level. When it concerns race it can be an issue because the disparate treatment of someone when it directly concerns the color of their skin can be easily misconstrued as discrimination. However, discrimination is more of the way the person is treated, not in their actual inequality to someone else. It tends to be a thin and blurry line at times.Discrimination occurs when someone is treated poorly as a result of their race, gender, age, religion, or ethnicity. Discrimination is the intentional treatment of someone of a different race, age, gender or religion, whereas disparity is just the difference between one and another.In the criminal justice system discrimination may occur in the workplace, during a traffic stop, in a correctional facility, or even in the courtroom, among other places. Whether it is obvious or not, it is still discriminatory to treat someone different because of who or what they are. A judge may give someone a harsher sentence in court, a police officer may make a traffic stop on one person instead of another because of their race, a correctional officer may deny medication...

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