Social Justice Research

Social Justice Word Association

2) Compare definitions of "social justice":

Definition List #1 (source)

  • Social justice means moving towards a society where all hungry are fed, all sick are cared for, the environment is treasured, and we treat each other with love and compassion. Not an easy goal, for sure, but certainly one worth giving our lives for!
  • Social justice means complete and genuine equality of all people. Not exactly stuff for Bartlett's, but there you go.
  • Social justice provides the foundation for a healthy community. It grows out of our sense that each person — each created being — has value. Only as we recognize the value and dignity of each person can we build a healthy community, so it's a slow, painful process of learning and growing. To help the process along we develop attitudes of respect for one another. We also shape policies and patterns of behavior to protect and enhance the worth of each person. We do this by building governmental and economic structures, educational and religious institutions, and all the other systems that provide for health and social welfare. This justice is not a goal that we'll ever reach, but a process, a struggle in which we can be engaged through all the pain and all the joy.
  • Social Justice means no kids going to bed hungry, no one without shelter or healthcare and a free and lively discussion and participation by all people in the political direction and organization of our communities and nation.
  • "Social Justice Work"' is work that we do in the interest of securing human rights, an equitable distribution of resources, a healthy planet, democracy, and a space for the human spirit to thrive (read: arts/culture/entertainment). We do the work to achieve these goals on both a local and a global scale.

Definition List #2 (source)

  • Promoting tolerance, freedom, and equality for all people regardless of race, sex, orietntation, national origin, handicap, etc... except for white, straight, cisgendered males. F*ck those guys, they're overprivileged no matter what.
  • A Utopian fantasy based on the Leninist concept of "equality of outcome." It says that since you have more, it must be taken away from you to give to those who have less, so that you are both equal. So there is much in common with the petty thief, who steals your wallet at gun point in order to equalize both of your wealth.
  • Social Justice is generally supported by hipsters of all ages who can't afford weekly groceries or gas for their cars, but who are simultaneously bedazzled with hundreds and sometimes thousands of dollars of tattoos and piercings.
  • A euphemism for an economic mugging by political force
  • The (typically online) practice of preaching for equality for people of all religions, races, genders, and sexual orientations. When done right, this can be a fantastic thing. Unfortunately, social justice tends to be done wrong, giving things like the gender equality movement and the gay rights movement a bad name.
  • Word used mainly by American teenagers and those without a college education to describe the frustration they feel at their own failures in life.
  • Mob violence, usually associated with a victim group.
  • Socialism.

3) How does use of "SJW" reflect polarization trends?

Data Visualization of U.S. House of Representatives Partisanship

Given the lack of agreement on defining the term "social justice," it is no surprise that there is similar polarization when it comes to discussing specific social justice issues.

As you research, you are encouraged to resist binary "black and white" thinking by taking on 4 challenges summarized below.

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