This paper will strive to define individual characteristics of diversity and multiculturalism and examine how each impacts individual behavior. No two people are exactly alike and defining and examining the diversity and multiculturalism that one runs into everyday can make relationships a lot easier to build and keep. Diversity affects every person's individual life either personally or through those that are different from the individual. Think about it, probably the most diverse environment one is exposed to on a daily basis is the workplace, and at least one-third of our days are spent in a work environment. Recognizing and adapting to the diversity and multiculturalism that is around can make the work place a much more enjoyable place.
One of the areas that one is exposed to almost on a daily basis is sexual orientation, or sexual preference. Sexual orientation is a subject that has been pushed to the forefront in recent years, and with this day and age of instant access (with the media and online information), anyone can read a wealth of information on the subject. There are many different varying theories on why people select homosexuality over heterosexuality or bi-sexuality over another. Some of the theories give physiological reasons for sexual preference while others base sexual orientation solely on environmental and psychological reasons. Ask someone who is of a different sexual preference why they are of that sexual preference; one will get different answers as to why he is of that affinity. Some will say that they were born that way and others will say that it is a chosen lifestyle. With so many varying degrees of reasoning and theories on sexual preference, it is impossible to come to a reasonable conclusion on why some prefer their own gender to those of the opposite sex.
How does sexual preference affect individual behavior? 50 years ago homosexuality was a taboo and forbidden subject. Teenagers who chose this lifestyle either hid it in the closet, or suppressed the urges and lived their life as a lie. Society at that time stigmatized the homosexual community and cast them as misfits and deviants. Rarely, if ever, did the subject ever come up at the dinner table. Imagine for a minute feeling one way, then the individuals family and society as a whole telling him he is mentally sick. One can be sure that because of society's views at that time, that these individuals felt a certain amount of shame and embarrassment for what was an otherwise natural feeling to them.
So where do those that have chosen a sexual preference against society's norms stand today. Because of laws that now protect those of a different sexual orientation, the workplace should be a more inviting place to be in. There are now homosexuals at the top ranks of government and the corporate world. Even now though, there are still perceptions and discrimination on this subject.
Those that choose a sexual preference that does not meet society's norms has finally ...