Current Events in the Realm of Social Work Practice — A Focus on Hate Crimes
CurrentEvents in the Realm of Social Work Practice — A Focus on HateCrimes
Thearticle of interests is "Hate Crimes Charges Filed Against Twoin Assault on Arab American," dated March 31, 2017. The articlereports on crime in which the police have charged two peopleaffiliated with the anti-Arab extremist group, the Jewish DefenseLeague for perpetrating hate crimes. The two were caught on a camerabeating up a Palestinian-American teacher. The assault happened atthe time the American Israel Public Affairs Committee held the annualmeeting. The video showed the members of the Jewish Defense Leaguewaving yellow flags, surrounding the victim, rounding and beatinghim. The assault left the victim with serious injuries (Democracynow,2017).
Therationale for choosing this article is informed by the rampant formsof hate crimes that are being perpetrated in the society. Indeed,hate crimes are still common around the world and are committed alongthe lines of ethnicity, racism, gender, tribe, nationalism, andreligion, among other dimensions. The most common forms of hatecrimes being experienced in the United States are based on race,nationalism, and religiosity, and this scenario is despite the commonassertion that the country is post-racial and multi-cultural society.The minority groups blacks and Asians are often concerned that theyare excluded or stereotyped in different spheres of life. Concerningreligion, the Muslims have been concerned about being stereotyped asthe members of terrorists (Chopra,2014).Certainly, the present state of hate crimes is critical and potentialcalls for social work intervention.
Issueand Social System
Thesituation at hand can be best explained by the culture of violencetheory. In the lens of this theory, a culture can be seen as anelement that is utilized in legitimizing violence either directly orstructurally. Ideally, a group of individuals develops certainideologies that are aimed at excluding the members affiliated toanother group. These ideas are passed to other members through thesocialization process, making them start perceiving the other membersnegatively. Over time, this negative perception could result inviolence between members of the two groups (Galtung,2012).
Thisarticle simply presents a typical example involving hate crimes anddoes not offer any solution or strategy on how the issue could beresolved. Nevertheless, it is indisputable that the present problemhas many implications for the social work professionals, who must nowrise to the occasion by renewing their focus on cultural conflictsand developing measures to foster harmony among the multiculturalcommunities. As can be clearly seen, the society is far fromovercoming the cultural violence. Part of the focus of the socialwork professionals would be to participate in the process of chartingsolutions to cultural violence. Indeed, the social work practitionersare presented with different options for supporting the reformprocesses. One of the solutions is sensitizing the communitiesregarding the need for tolerance for cultural differences and therespect the rights of other people as enshrined in the constitution.The professionals should mobilize the communities to change theirideologies and embrace the idea of cultural diversity. They shouldengage with the policymakers within the government institutions,lobby and identify the areas of weaknesses and develop policies thatare commensurate with the social needs (Ramsay& Boddy, 2016).It is hoped that such processes would go a long way in fosteringunderstanding and tolerance of cultural diversity.
Chopra,A. (2014). "Structural Violence". InternationalJournal Of Multidisciplinary Approach & Studies.1(4): 19–23 .
Democracynow.HateCrimes Charges Filed Against Two in Assault on Arab American.Democracynow. Retrieved fromhttps://www.democracynow.org/2017/3/31/headlines/hate_crimes_charges_filed_against_two_in_assault_on_arab_american
Galtung,J. (2012). "Cultural Violence," Journalof Peace Research,Vol. 27, No. 3 , pp. 291-305
Ramsay,S., & Boddy, J. (2016). Environmental social work: A conceptanalysis. BritishJournal of Social Work,bcw078.
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