Argumentative Essay on Color Blindness: More Benefits or Harm?

Argumentative Essay on Color Blindness: More Benefits or Harm?


Recent research demonstrates that although some individuals may find color blindness beneficial, it also shrinks their awareness of racism and discrimination. Moreover, under certain circumstances,  a color-blind model negatively affects interracial contacts, minorities’ perceptions, and the advancement of diversity in their workplaces. The paper aims to study whether the models of color blindness and multiculturalism reduce or contribute to discrimination and racism. The essay explores the psychological issues associated with color blindness and the consequences of its initiation into a society. The findings demonstrate that, while people of color tend to perceive multiculturalism positively, both models can exacerbate inequality under certain circumstances.

Benefits of the Color-Blind Models

When implemented correctly, a model of color-blindness can bring particular benefits. First, it promotes the egalitarian image in society. It is the vision that peopleshould be treated according to their individual traits rather than their race. Second, adopting a color-blind perspective contributes to a society where people are perceived as individuals rather than representatives of a particular race and this model helps to minimize race-associated stereotypes and prejudices (Lewis et al., 2000). Third, it promotes the empowerment of people by not defining them solely by their race but by their unique talents, achievements, and goals.

Implications of Color-Blind Models

When there is a definite threat, White individuals with a strong social dominance orientation (preferring group-based hierarchy) may use color blindness as a tactic to uphold the prevailing social order. Additionally, individuals from low-status groups with a high social dominance orientation resonate with color-blind racial attitudes (Lewis et al., 2000).

The literature also suggests that individuals who support color blindness may not only be less sensitive to racism but also less infformed about the unique realities faced by minorities. For instance, a study focusing on early-career teachers revealed that those with pronounced color-blind orientations were less willing to adapt their teaching methods to meet the needs of ethnic-minority students. Further research indicates a link between color-blind racial attitudes and lower adoption of inclusive teaching practices by educators, diminished empathy among therapists, increased apathy towards racism, and reduced willingness to support diversity initiatives like affirmative action aimed at reducing discrimination.

Attitudes toward Multiculturalism

Multiculturalism receives relatively strong support across various demographic groups, with ethnic and racial minorities tending to endorse it more than majority groups. Understanding why some individuals find it challenging to embrace multiculturalism involves considering factors such as threat perception. For example, White Dutch students who perceived symbolic threats, such as Muslims being seen as a threat to Dutch culture and identity, exhibited reduced support for multiculturalism. Notably, White individuals, in general, may feel particularly threatened by multiculturalism compared to color blindness. Presenting multiculturalism in concrete, as opposed to abstract, terms heightened symbolic threats to national identity among White American participants, leading to increased anti-Latino prejudice (Plaut et al., 2018).

One possible explanation for resistance to multiculturalism is the association of diversity with non-White groups, leading Whites to feel excluded. The question of whether multiculturalism, which emphasizes group categories, facilitates or reduces stereotyping and prejudice is complex. Some studies suggest that supporting multicultural ideology correlates with decreased stereotyping, while others indicate increased stereotyping. However, in cases of heightened stereotyping, it does not necessarily translate to lower regard for ethnic minorities among White persons or an inability to use individualized information. Regarding prejudice, both White individuals and people of color endorsing multiculturalism demonstrate lower levels of prejudice. Exposure to multicultural content temporarily decreases implicit prejudice and results in less implicit and explicit prejudice compared to color blindness (Plaut et al., 2018).


The essay concludes that both color blindness and multiculturalism, despite their potential benefits, can contribute to inequality. Color blindness may foster negative outcomes for people of color and reinforce existing racial hierarchies, while multiculturalism may provoke prejudice and pose challenges in identity expression for minorities. The impact of these models depends on factors like group status, numerical representation, perceived threats, and whether they are employed to challenge or maintain the status quo. Understanding these nuances is crucial for addressing discrimination and racism effectively.


Lewis, A. E., Chesler, M., & Forman, T. A. (2000). The impact of “Colorblind” ideologies on students of color: Intergroup relations at a predominantly white university. The Journal of Negro Education, 69(1/2), 74–91.

Plaut, V. C., Thomas, K. M., Hurd, K., & Romano, C. A. (2018). Do color blindness and multiculturalism remedy or foster discrimination and racism? Current Directions in Psychological Science, 27(3), 200-206.

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