Portfolio Reflection 3: Inequality

Course dealt with Inequality:

  • WGST 395 – reproductive Justice
  • SOCL 320 – sociology of education 
  • HIST 320 – African American History 
  • CTZN 410 – Queer Virginia 
  • SOCL 233 – Intro Social Inequality and Differences 

The majority of my classes discuss inequality however classes such as Reproductive Justice, Queer Virginia, and African American history really challenged my thinking because if forced me to grown academically and gave me a new perspective other than my current ideologies on issues such as race, gender, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, etc. My views regarding inequality about inclusivity changed when I researched Longwood’s resources and services for queer students and when I found solutions and avenues to make the resources easily accessible to students. 

Inequality is shown through a multitude of ways throughout society. In my reproductive justice class I wrote about and examined how women rights are not equal to men. In which women have to fight for the right not to have children, the right to have children, and the right to parent children in a safe and healthy environment. Inequality is a significant part of reproductive justice because there are so many barriers that prevent women from having autonomy over their bodies. My thinking evolved in this class because when I first started the class I thought reproductive justice only dealt with Roe v. Wade debate, however I have since learned how impactful reproductive justice is because it gives women control over their bodies, their families, and how to parent their children.

In my Queer Virginia class I learned a lot in terms of inequality and how Queer individuals are still fighting for their basic human rights today. The most important lesson shown in my writings from this class is that Queer history is significant because their history is American history regardless of gender. The Queer communities have overcome inequalities as they constantly have to fight for acceptance, acknowledgement, visibility, equality, and justice. This class helped change my views about inequality regarding the Queer community as I had to examine resources and support that the local community at longwood university offers for queer students and how to make these resources easily accessible to all students. 

In terms of disability I have not had any classes that discuss this topic. However, through personal experiences individuals that have a disability and need accessibility commendations often struggle to receive those accommodations. When events are taking place everyone does not consider if a space is easily accessible to all students, if the building they are entering has a ramp, or if a building wheelchair buttons to open the doors work. Through my time of serving in leadership roles I have learned to consider these topics because it is not just enough to be diverse, yet one must be inclusive and equitable to all. My views and thoughts on this subjects were changed in a positive way because it makes me more aware of my surrounding and how my actions can impact someone else that may be dealing with a disability that is not visible to the eye 

In my African-American studies class inequality was discussed as being embedded into Black Culture. This included writings regarding hiring processes, stereotypes/stigmas, mass incarceration, racial profiling, race and the media, education, etc. My thoughts and perceptions were not altered in regarding class and socioeconomic status because as a member of the black community. I am directly impacted by these barriers regarding inequality so discussion around these issues was just a refresher on information already learned. In terms of intersectionality. An individual that is black and has a lower socioeconomic status will face more barriers such as being labeled as a welfare Queen or not being able to give their children the best resources. Intersectionality is a huge factor in regards to inequality because these two terms are interconnected. 

My future career path of wanting to enter the criminal justice field as an attorney. It will deal with inequality directly because I want to help improve communities that face barriers due to race, gender/sexuality, disability, socioeconomic status, etc. A lot of the times individuals that are placed in a position to go to court or are serving time in prison are there as a result of a system of inequality. Intersectionality is a huge factor in regards to inequality because these two terms are interconnected. Intersectionality is defined as multiple forms of inequality that are connected and overlap when addressing inequality one must look at all forms of inequality and how they may affect one person versus another person because this is a complex framework to recognize all individuals’ experiences. So having the knowledge and understanding of factors of inequality and intersectionality can only better help give back to the communities that need the help and support the most.