to make a distinction in favor of or against a person or thing on the basis of the group, class, or category to which the person or thing belongs rather than according to actual merit; show partiality:The new law discriminates against foreigners. He discriminates in favor of his relatives.
to note or observe a difference; distinguish accurately: to discriminate between things.
to make or constitute a distinction in or between; differentiate: a mark that discriminates the original from the copy.
to note or distinguish as different: He can discriminate minute variations in tone.
marked by discrimination; making or evidencing nice distinctions: discriminate people; discriminate judgments.
- dis·crim·i·nate·ly, adverb
- half-dis·crim·i·nat·ed, adjective
- pre·dis·crim·i·nate, verb (used with object), pre·dis·crim·i·nat·ed, pre·dis·crim·i·nat·ing.
- un·dis·crim·i·nat·ed, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
How to use discriminate in a sentence
Republicans want to alter Section 230 to stop platforms from discriminating against conservative voices by removing accounts or censoring posts deemed to be hate speech, disinformation or other content that incites violence.Cheat sheet: U.S. lawmakers propose Section 230 reforms to regulate online paid speech | Kate Kaye | February 10, 2021 | Digiday
They are, at their core, an attempt to create a taxpayer-funded invitation to discriminate.Betsy DeVos is gone — but ‘DeVosism’ sure isn’t. Look at what Florida, New Hampshire and other states are doing. | Valerie Strauss | February 5, 2021 | Washington Post
Bitcoin is neutral like cash, and can’t discriminate between good and bad.In the Fight Against Extremism, Don't Demonize Surveillance-Busting Tools like Signal and Bitcoin | Alex Gladstein | January 26, 2021 | Time
In effect, the laws prevented practices like paid prioritization, in which faster connections went to companies willing to pay fees to ISPs, or blocking, which would allow companies to discriminate against lawful content.The FCC is about to undergo a huge shift that could drastically affect the internet | Stan Horaczek | January 22, 2021 | Popular-Science
For the court to decide otherwise, it would mandate that the city discriminate.
Allowing some people to discriminate sends the message that discrimination is okay.Do LGBTs Owe Christians an Olive Branch? Try The Other Way Around | Jay Michaelson | December 14, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
State RFRAs would allow businesses owners to legally discriminate against same-sex couples.
Allow small businesses—for-profit wedding chapels, caterers, florists—to discriminate against gays.RFRA Madness: What’s Next for Anti-Democratic ‘Religious Exemptions’ | Jay Michaelson | November 16, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Yup, Evelyn and Donald Knapp are “ordained Christian ministers” suing for the right to discriminate.Refusing to Marry Same-Sex Couples Isn’t Religious Freedom, It’s Just Discrimination | Sally Kohn | October 23, 2014 | THE DAILY BEAST
Not wanting to discriminate against low-income clients, though, she scheduled the appointment.
Nor can a telegraph company discriminate against another in refusing credit which is given to other responsible parties.Putnam's Handy Law Book for the Layman | Albert Sidney Bolles
But she was quick to discriminate between usurpation, and legal authority.A short history of Rhode Island | George Washington Greene
She is brother's-daughter of his Mother, Sophie Charlotte: let the reader learn to discriminate these two names.History Of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. I. (of XXI.) | Thomas Carlyle
I'll be better qualified after this to discriminate between the false and true.Patchwork | Anna Balmer Myers
Again, we find the Tojin baka often fail to discriminate between different classes of females.
British Dictionary definitions for discriminate
(intr; usually foll by in favour of or against) 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
(when intr, foll by between or among) to recognize or understand the difference (between); distinguish: to discriminate right and wrong; to discriminate between right and wrong
(intr) to constitute or mark a difference
(intr) to be discerning in matters of taste
showing or marked by discrimination
- discriminately, adverb
- discriminator, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012