Essay question:

How far does the modern world embrace diversity?

Interpretation of Keywords:

Embraces diversity:

Diversity-readiness to accept people of different backgrounds: race, religion, gender, values/ideologies

 

Does not embrace diversity:

More instances of marginalisation, distrust, xenophobia.

 

The modern world does not embrace diversity

1st Argument:

The increasing rise of xenophobic and anti-immigrant sentiments in many nations today point towards the observation that the modern world is one that lacks an inclusive attitude. Xenophobic attitudes are rampant among many developed societies in the current time.

 

Examples:

Incendiary responses to the Singapore Population White Paper:

Singapore’s Population White Paper is a proposal that aims to raise the population to 6.9 million by 2030. Many Singaporeans reacted strongly against the potential influx of foreigners, this highlights the underlying xenophobia which is within the many minds of Singaporeans.

 

Brexit referendum:

The rhetoric behind the Brexit referendum partly based on xenophobic fears. Many Britons felt that the immigration system was out of control. This stand was further galvanised by the mass immigration that occurred due to the European refugee crisis.

 

German elections:

German elections — AfD( Alternative for Germany) – political opposition party that has recently risen to greater prominence and support among Germans because of its critical and cautious approach towards German’s immigration because of growing public anxiety and worry towards foreigners and migrants

 

2nd Argument:

In a world fraught with trans-border terrorism and religious fundamentalism, it is regrettable to note that Islamophobia is on the rise, leading to the backlash and discrimination against the Muslims in many nations.

 

Examples:

Donald Trump’s travel ban:

Donald Trump’s contentious travel ban issued on the six Muslim-majority nations in the Middle East – reinforces Islamophobic rhetoric

 

Protests over the construction of mosques near ground zero:

New York City – public protests over the construction of a local mosque near Ground Zero, the site where the World Trade Tower buildings collapsed during September 11 attack.

3rd Argument:

More than ever, we now witness greater tensions between the liberals and the conservatives over morally grey issues and values, as both groups are advocating their points of view.

 

Examples:

 

Wear White Movement in Singapore:

Religiously inspired movement by members in the local Muslim and Christian community in Singapore that takes a disapproving stance towards the annual rally known as Pink Dot Movement held by the LGBT(Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) community.

 

 

The world is more inclusive towards diversity

1st Argument:

Thanks to more proactive and progressive policies implemented by governments, there is now a greater emphasis on multi-culturalism in our diverse societies today.

Examples:

Group Representation Constituency (GRC):

GRC system in Singapore — racially diverse members of parliament to represent different ethnic groups

 

Race allocation for the presidency:

Reserved presidential candidacy that is reserved for the Malay race, to ensure minority representation

 

2nd Argument:

More than ever, there is advocacy for individual rights in a world that emphasises human rights and individuality.

 

Examples:

 

“HeforShe”

This united nation initiative aims to eliminate all gender discrimination against women, by encouraging both male and females to take responsibility for curbing the issue of inequality between the sexes.

 

Transient Workers Count Too (TWC2)

This organisation is a local NGO ( Non-Governmental-Organisation) that champions the welfare of migrant workers in Singapore.

 

3rd Argument:

Social media and the Internet are creating platforms & conversations that empower the marginalised in society, giving a voice to the voiceless. A diversity of views in society will be enhanced when marginalised groups are given an equal opportunity to express their voices and reflect their experiences.

 

Examples:

 

Humans of New York

A photo blog that features the different faces of humanity in New York, ranging from homeless migrants to LGBT individuals that tend to be neglected in society—- helping to raise awareness and creating space for empathy towards the marginalised.

 

#BlackLivesMatter:

 

An advocacy among the African-American activists that express their voices against the perceived racial injustice in the U.S

 

#MeToo movement:

This hashtag was created to raise awareness about the rampant issue of sexual abuse within all cultures. It encourages women and men to speak up about the times that they have been sexually abused.