Culture is a people’s way of life. It can also be defined as a set of traditions adopted by certain groups of people. When we define culture, we have to talk about the cultural values, which are the principles, or qualities that a group of people will tend to view as good or right (Peterson 22). Different people from different parts of the world have different ways of life. Some carry on activities not carried out by other people elsewhere.
The culture of people includes the food they eat, dances, their race, their way of dressing, and religion just to mention but a few (Peterson 17). However, violent activities such as stoning, mutilation, killing and forceful abortions cannot be termed as part of people’s way of life.
That is, crime and criminal activities cannot be termed as part of people’s culture. The culture of people can remain the same or change with time, especially as people become more civilized. The change can also arise because of a prolonged exposure to a different culture. The exposure to these different cultures can result to positive or negative changes (Haggis and Susanne 18).
To some people, an activity carried out by others is not right before them. For example, different groups of people have different modes of dressing especially for woman. Some religions do not allow the exposure of some parts of the woman’s body like the hair and the legs, while according to others it is very much okay (Haggis and Susanne 104). This can be a great conflict if the two sets of people are to live in the same location.
Circumcision is a form of initiation passed over very many generations up to the present one. Still, there are some communities who to them, circumcision is a taboo. Therefore, when such people with different cultures come together, conflicts can arise. This happens especially when the two groups of people differ with respect to a certain activity carried out by either of them.
The integration of different cultures in one environment leads to disruption of traditions. Contacts between different cultures are also viewed as cultural clashes for they are bound to result in undesirable consequences or even destruction of one or all the cultures (Haggis and Susanne 7). Therefore, culture clash by definition is a conflict that occurs when people with different cultural values come together.
The way of life of people is a measure of their level of civilization. The evolution of man from an ape has seen him change from being primitive to being modern. Thus, culture refers to the acquisition of civilization, which is a process of social development (Haggis and Susanne 18).
The lack of change of people to the new cultures is normally referred to as under civilization. New inventions especially to do with technology normally increase the rate of civilization. Similarly, education makes people to be more civilized. So to say, education and the ever-changing technology can determine the way of life of people.
When people at different levels of civilization are integrated, conflicts will definitely arise because the people will differ in a variety of things. This is because traditions and habits of different people can come into a conflict. The fundamental divisions in humanity in terms of ethnicity, religion, or civilization can lead to new conflicts (Haggis and Susanne 39).
One example of a culture-clashing event is in the issue abortion. Abortion is the termination of pregnancy. Various circumstances force women to decide to have an abortion. Most of the times, cases of abortion are based on unwanted pregnancies. The only exception is when a woman is willing to have a child but due to health complications, the doctors advise on an abortion (Keown 99).
Others proceed with it because they cannot afford to have children mainly because they are not prepared in terms of finances. They do not want to fail in giving their children quality life or maybe they do not want to strain in the process of bringing up the child.
Getting a child out of wedlock is also a taboo to some people, and executing it can put one in a social dilemma. Therefore, many prefer to do away with the pregnancy. Most young girls will prefer to have an abortion in order to hide the pregnancies from their parents. In other cases, their parents order them to do it. Other reasons for abortion include the need to continue with education or being in a demanding career.
There has been a big conflict between pro-life and pro-choice supporters especially in the United States of America where abortion has been legalized. Pro-life supporters do not advocate for abortion while the pro-life supporters believe that it is a woman’s choice. Most of the pro-life supporters are mainly religious people.
Some countries have legalized abortion, which has led to a very big debate in the whole world, regarding its authorization. The issue has brought about a great conflict between these two groups of people. According to the religious people, abortion is a sin because it is termed as killing (Keown 20).
This is because they believe that life begins after conception and not birth. Once a woman becomes pregnant, she carries a life in her womb, which deserves due respect. According to them, it undermines human dignity because it deprives a living being the right to live. On the other hand, the pro-choice supporters believe that every female has the legal right to choose whether to continue with a pregnancy or terminate it (Legg 2). The issue has brought about a lot of conflict between the two classes of people.
The Supreme Court in the United States of America, gave women the right to have an abortion if they so wish in the year 1973 (Legge 120). The issue has brought about a big clash between the government and its supporters in the issue and the pro life supporters. Up to date it has faced much opposition especially from the Catholic Church.
There have been many forums held to press the government to do away with the law. The pro-life supporters do not see the reason as to why the government should pass a law that allows the killing of innocent unborn babies. On the other hand, the government and the pro-choice supporters do not recognize the fetus as a person. This has created a big debate as to when life begins.
Other countries have tried to pass the law in vain because, among them there are those who do not support the idea. For instance, in china, the law sometimes allows abortion. The presence of religions in such countries plays a very great role in rejecting the legalization of abortion. Apart from abortion, Pro-life groups do not agree with any activity, which leads to lose of life like the death penalty, assisted suicide, and war among others.
The pro-life supporters believe that the government has every right to preserve all human life. It is conservative where the pro-life ethnic conflicts with personal autonomy, conservative, and liberal where the pro-life ethnic conflicts with government policy. On the contrary, Pro-choice supporters believe that there is unlimited autonomy for individuals with regard to their reproductive systems given that they do not interfere with the autonomy of other people.
This is to mean that, a growing fetus is part of the reproductive system and not a person. The Supreme Court in the United States ruled that the fetus was not a person and therefore, did not require protection from the constitution until it reached a point of viability (Legge 120). This has increased the tension between the two groups of people.
The arguments between the pro-life and the pro-choice supporters on the issue of life differ a lot and that is what has brought about such a conflict. It has been the culture of religious people to preserve life at all cost because it is sacred. On the other hand, pro-choice supporters do not see the importance of protecting a person who has not yet been born.
The pro-life supporters argue that the fetus life is sacred just like any other human life and so the government must protect it (Keown 37). On the other hand, the pro-choice movement argues that there is no proven human personhood in pregnancies. Therefore, the government should not restrict a woman’s right to decide whether to continue with a pregnancy or not. With these different arguments, these two groups of people will never come to an agreement.
The pro-choice supporters in the United States of America argue that there is no scientific prove for the existence of souls but religion teaches that the soul exists and it is sacred because it is created by God and should not be interfered with (Van11). As said earlier, religious people believe that life begins after conception.
The difference between that life and the life in us is that, that life is inside another life but then, they are two different lives. Therefore, abortion deserves the treatment of a murder case. Women have no right to choose to terminate a pregnancy, for they will be taking away the life of another person.
There is a conflict between the people and the government of the United States because it does not acknowledge the existence of an immortal soul whose life begins at conception. According to the government, there is no personhood in such a fetus and thus it deserves no rights to be accorded to it as given to other human beings (Legge 120). Therefore, women have a right to decide whether to continue with a pregnancy or to terminate it if they so wish. The pro-life supporters do not agree with that.
There is a big conflict between various theological traditions in the United States of America about when life begins. That is the reason as to why there is a big disparity on the issue of abortion. There are theological traditions that teach that the soul does not begin at conception but rather long after the fetus starts to make some movements.
That may be at end of the second trimester or at the beginning of the third trimester. Others believe that the implantation of a soul takes place at birth while others teach that the soul implantation takes place after birth (Van 22). The funniest of all is that there are still others that believe that there is no an immortal soul.
These theological traditional differences make people to come into conflict on the issue of abortion. If the soul implantation takes place after the fetus begins to make some movements, then terminating the pregnancy before it reaches that stage is not bad. Similarly, if the soul implantation occurs at or after birth, then abortion deserves authorization. If there lacks an immortal soul, then abortion should be just something so normal like other daily activities, something that the pro-life supporters do not agree with.
The pro choice supporters argue that research indicates that all parts of the human body are alive apart from the hair and the nails. However, the removal of some parts of the body like the tonsils and the appendix is possible on medical grounds to save the life of a person.
As such, some pro-choice supporters argue that if these parts can be removed and they are part of a life, then a woman should be granted the choice of termination of pregnancy if she so wishes. This is because they do not term the fetus growing within the womb of the woman as a separate being but as a part of her own reproductive system (Van 10). The pro-life supporters do not agree with that and hence the never-ending debate.
To avoid culture clash, people should interact with other cultures and try to fit into each other’s traditions. This will definitely make the people get to understand other people’s way of life and hence appreciate them. This will bring about respect for the people’s backgrounds, races, and religions.
The diversity of cultures makes the world a beautiful place because if we were to behave in the same way, there would no need to travel to different parts of the world and see what other people do. Many tourists travel from different parts of the world to different destinations in order to experience them.
Haggis, Jane and Susanne Schaech. Culture and Development: A Critical Introduction. Malden, MA: Blackwell Publishers, 2000. Print.
Keown, John. Abortion, Doctors and the Law: Some Aspects of the Legal Regulation of Abortion in England from 1803 to 1982. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002. Print.
Legge, Jerome S. Abortion Policy: An Evaluation of the Consequences for Maternal and Infant Health. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1985. Print.
Peterson, Brooks. Cultural Intelligence: A Guide to Working with People from Other Cultures. Yarmouth, Me. [u.a.: Intercultural Press, 2004. Print.
Van, Coops M. R. Pro-life, Pro-Choice, Pro-Spirit! Bloomington, IN: Author House, 2007. Print.