As someone who attended high school in a rural setting and then College in urban settings I have come to really appreciate the benefits of a diverse population. My high school was probably 90% white and it never bothered me, I didn't think I was discriminatory, and at the time would have loved to live the rest of my life in that same setting. That all changed when I started College at NHCC in Brooklyn Park MN. I truly realized how sheltered I had been all of my life. NHCC is a community college with a large minority population and at first this somewhat frightened me. I had believed that I had been raised to be very open towards other races and cultures and compared to some of my high school class mates I really was, but the initial fear I had which took the form of minority stereotypes showed me otherwise. Being compelled to work with people different than myself in classes however showed me how much I liked and now value diversity. I really appreciate the different ideas and views of society that are brought to diverse settings, it has allowed me to expand my own thoughts of how I view the world and what needs to be done to make this country a more equal place to live.
The American Psychological Association report "Dual Pathways to a Better America: Preventing Discrimination and Promoting Diversity" http://www.apa.org/pubs/info/reports/promoting-diversity.aspx gives examples of the problems of Discrimination and Diversity and how to attempt to fix them. Two that really strike me are economic disparity which has in many ways kept racial groups separated in this country, and also workplace diversity in which certain businesses and industries have disproportionate amounts of minority workers. It is my belief that Economic Disparity is the biggest problem in regards to discrimination and diversity. Evidence of this can be seen everywhere especially neighborhoods. For example some of the poorest areas of the Twin Cities such as North Minneapolis and to a lesser degree South Minneapolis have far larger minority populations than places like Minnetonka and Eden Prairie. The fact of the matter is that places like Minnetonka and Eden Prairie require larger amounts of money to live there and places like North and South Minneapolis don't. Yes there is always exceptions and each city has its poor and rich neighborhoods but population wise wealthier cities have larger white populations and smaller minority populations like African Americans and Latino Americans. This separation can also be linked to workplace diversity. Better jobs usually require a better education which often requires lots of money which many minority families do not have. Even though things like scholarships and grants are created to help minority groups it is not enough, proportionately even Schools like the U of M have far fewer minority students than whites. More needs to be done to support diversity and extinguish discrimination but I am doubtful if the country will ever be completely equal to all people. Also as the report shows even those of us who say we are not discriminatory tend to still harbor stereotypical beliefs, why do you think this is and can it be completely answered by Psychology. If anything I am saying makes sense please leave a comment its a subject that is important for everyone in this country to realize is still very much alive, especially with recent incidents like Trayvon Martin.