Race is a socially constructed, hierarchical categorization system used to classify people who share biological traits that a society thinks are important. Whereas, an ethnic group is a group that has a shared cultural heritage. It is important to know the difference between race and ethnicity because definitions of race in the United States have changed over time to meet the needs of the racial group with the most social, economic, and political power. According to the human genome project at the National Human Genome Research Institute, our DNA is 99.9% the same and the differences between people are accounted for are less than 0.1% of DNA. In other words, we should honor and appreciate the differences of one another, while keeping in mind we are all part of the same side-by-side human family.
What’s the difference between race and ethnicity? Today we’ll look at how definitions of races and ethnicities have changed over time and across places. We also discuss the terms minority and minority-majority and how races are defined in the United States.