Astrology creates new prejudice

Astrology permits younger generations to get away with prejudicial acts



Imagine a millennial deciding to get an abortion over astrology. You can’t, right? Well, brace yourself because someone did exactly that.

SAMANTHA RADCLIFFE, Evergreen columnist

Prejudice is a “feeling, favorable or unfavorable, toward a person or thing, prior to, or not based on, actual experience,” according to American psychologist Gordon Allport. 

The U.S. is very familiar with prejudice. Many Americans develop preconceived notions about people based on, for example, race, gender, sexuality and political affiliation.

In recent years, though, younger generations have developed a new type of prejudice: astrology.

One day, I was scrolling through YouTube, and I came across a video where a woman got an abortion because her baby’s zodiac sign – Sagittarius – was not be compatible for a mother/child bond!

I was completely flabbergasted! How could someone make a life-altering decision based on a pseudoscientific practice? How could someone be so prejudiced against their future baby — because of their zodiac sign — that they resorted to abortion?

After some digging, I learned the prejudice within astrology can come in less extreme versions as well. 

Payton Ferguson, sophomore plant science major, described unpleasant exchanges with others who were into astrology.

“Whenever I mention that I am a Gemini, they are never very interested in hanging out,” she said. “They are always quick to judge me based on my zodiac sign.”

Ferguson said there are numerous stereotypes surrounding Geminis, such as not listening to others properly, being two-faced, getting bored easily and struggling to commit to anything.

“This has happened to me quite a bit because Geminis are one of the least understood [zodiac] signs,” she said. “It has been very difficult because I have met a lot of people who do not want to associate with Geminis.”

In our society, it is frowned upon to be prejudiced against someone for something out of their control, such as race and sexuality. Yet, some people feel it is okay to be prejudiced against someone who has no control over their birthday? 

On the other hand, not everyone who believes in astrology is inherently prejudiced.

Cia Bell, sophomore sociology major, said she follows astrology but not to the maniacal extent that some do. She acknowledges the different personality traits in people and associates it with their zodiac signs, but she does not let astrology dictate or influence her social decisions.

“I don’t believe in basing your relationships on compatibility,” she said. “It is just fun and interesting to know people’s zodiac signs and see the small behaviors that relate to their sign.”

The bulk of this column is not focused on people like Bell, who read astrology for entertainment. It is directed at the people who feel as if astrology is a form of religion and use it as a reason to make life-altering decisions.

Yes, I understand astrology can appear romantic in the sense that you can predict the future or understand someone’s personality. Humankind has always thirsted for the ultimate knowledge — the kind that allows us to know everything about something or someone before interacting with it.

But it goes too far when you use astrology as an excuse to prejudice against others and/or make a devastatingly, everlasting, impactful decision.

Life is hard enough. Why make it even more complicated by giving astrology so much gravitas?