Definition of "discriminate" []

  • To make a clear distinction; distinguish: discriminate among the options available. (verb-intransitive)
  • To make sensible decisions; judge wisely. (verb-intransitive)
  • To make distinctions on the basis of class or category without regard to individual merit; show preference or prejudice: was accused of discriminating against women; discriminated in favor of his cronies. (verb-intransitive)
  • To perceive the distinguishing features of; recognize as distinct: discriminate right from wrong. (verb-transitive)
  • To distinguish by noting differences; differentiate: unable to discriminate colors. (verb-transitive)
  • To single out a particular person, group, etc, for special favour or, esp, disfavour, often because of a characteristic such as race, colour, sex, intelligence, etc (verb)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • To recognize or understand the difference (between); distinguish (verb)
  • To constitute or mark a difference (verb)
  • To be discerning in matters of taste (verb)
  • Showing or marked by discrimination (adjective) (c) HarperCollins Publishers Ltd 2016

Use "discriminate" in a sentence
  • "To claim that not allowing the bank to racially discriminate is an entitlement program clearly shows that."
  • "Wanting to allow someone to discriminate is not racist any more than wanting to allow someone to speak racist things is racist."
  • "To defend the rights of racists to discriminate is reprehensible and especially so when it is done by a major party nominee for the U.S. Senate ...."