Microaggressions Campus Commentary Revision

Microaggressions often sounds like a commonplace fancy word that blends in with other descriptive words. In reality, microaggressions hurt and stand out, just like the pink text color in this image.

During the student-run microaggressions panel on 9/25/19 about the presence of microaggression on and off Davidson’s campus, five students of different ethnicities discussed the definition and effects of subtle, mostly unrecognizable acts of racism commonplace in everyday society. These students describe a microaggression as a statement or act not often intended to be harmful and as gaining power from its cumulative effect. For example, people repeatedly asking a peer where her accent is from is not an innately biased question, but it subliminally tells the peer that she is seen and recognized as a foreigner who may need help to understand the majority’s language and culture. After receiving this question once, she may be stung and annoyed, but receiving and answering this question multiple times becomes an attack on her existence and purpose. Microaggressions often stem from stereotypes and close-mindedness. While many microaggressions are unintentional, the lack of response and constructive action is disgraceful. Not only are people ignorant about how their words affect others, but most are also not taught to act in a different way. Additionally, the use of microaggressions in media and the entertainment industry through a portrayal of the stereotypical white beauty and talent standards prolongs the belief that all other races are inferior. By having white lead actors in movies and the standard white, thin models on magazines, all other races and body types are ignored and disrespected.  As a society, we should encourage introspection about our own microaggressions and encourage others to do the same to create a more inclusive and accepting national atmosphere.

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