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IPFS News Link • Freedom

Discrimination and Liberty

•, by Christine Smith

In today's society, "discrimination" has become a trigger word used to vilify anyone who chooses not to associate with another because of a difference he rejects. As such, liberty is being trampled as freedom of speech, association, and even thought become prohibited.

But "discrimination" is not a bad word. It is a good word. It is the right of every individual.

An intelligent, thoughtful individual discriminates in many life choices, be it in health decisions, foods he eats, what he purchases, places he goes, activities in which he participates, the music and art he appreciates, or with whom he associates. Our values, culture, religious beliefs, and many other factors shape what we appreciate.

If you didn't discriminate, all manner of people (and some you may find very disagreeable) would be in your life. But you, and you alone, choose with whom you associate on the basis of your likes and dislikes. You choose your friends, just as you choose what family members are allowed closeness in your life. You choose with whom to get a cup of coffee, with whom to see a film, or with whom to go skiing. You choose whom you pick up the phone and call. You choose the people with whom you associate and those you purge from your life or at least minimize communication with. You choose whom you socialize with. In other words, you discriminate.