In my social psychology course it is said that stereotyping and discrimination is ultimately hardwired into us. We subconsciously and automatically bring up stereotypes of people, whether it is race, gender, sexual orientation, religion, whatever else. But when these thoughts are brought to our conscious we can make a conscious effort to suppress these thoughts.
SO the question: Do you succumb to these thoughts of stereotypes, or do you make an effort to move these thoughts from your conscious when they arise? Do you subscribe to this theory?
I agree that stereotyping and discrimination is common but that's just a short-cut in determining those we chose to associate with and those we tend to avoid. That being said, individuals are unique and only by making a conscious effort to avoid stereotype judgment and discrimination do we get to know one another as people, individual and richly different. I prefer to get to know people....and TRY not to dismiss them because of what they call themselves or what religion or social stratum they claim. Everyone's entitled to believe and act as is their wont...and I DO try to remember that and honor it. It's not my place to judge others. If they're nice to me, I'm nice to them. But....that's just me. LOL! Each to his own.
You can be racist and not discrimintary.
yes i would agree with you there, this just says that we have the thought that we are better, but we do not act on it. I feel that being racist if you choose to be is fine (i am not) but if you are its the acting on it part that is not acceptable.
And when we meet someone that goes against our stereotypes we create a subtype for that person to fit into.
I would say that you would be hard pressed to find someone out there who is truly free of some kind of discrimination or stereotyping. I have come across alot of people in my time that find it hard to believe that I would show any discriminations or predjudices, being that I am Mexican and married to a black man. Truth is that no matter who you are you can not deny that you were brought up believing certain things. I'm not saying that you haven't changed some of your beliefs as you have grown up and come to your own conclusions, I'm just saying that somewhere deep down inside those beliefs are still lingering. They may be suppressed, but they are still lurking whether you want to admit it or not. For instance I was born here in PA in a very Catholic home, raised to believe that all people are equal in God's eyes, however don't you dare "mix" with anyone of another race. For years that is what I believed, I thought that other races were not on an equal level as myself (dumb, I know!). This was one that I struggled with since it was not a personal belief. I always had black friends and didn't understand why we shouldn't mix. When I met my husband, although in my heart I knew he was a good man and in fact was better than half the other guys out there, I felt that I had to hide my relationship with him for quite a while. Hiding it from my family and friends, for fear they would turn on me for "degrading" myself and stooping to such a low level. Thankfully that is one thought process that I chose to change in my life.(my husband and I have been together now for 19 yrs.) However I must admit that there are other discriminatory thoughts that have still lingered... not that I'm proud of those thoughts, but I am being honest. IMO there is not a single person who does not show discrimination on some level. Be it the southerner who thinks Yankees are liberal and immoral, or those that are homophobic etc. etc... be honest with yourselves... there is something in all of us along these lines that we would like to change. Nobody is perfect...So, yes even though I make an effort not to succumb to these thoughts.. they still pop up and surprise me from time to time...Then I try to make more of an effort to change that thought process and move forward.
there is actually an idea that the more we suppress these thoughts, later on they will come back stronger than the original time. Like a thought rebound.
every thing we go through in life will either give a solid foundation to these beliefs; or will deminish with the experiences we have.
I recognize it when I do it and have made the assumption that nearly everyone has a similar process of categorizing potential interaction with others.
I don't suppress the thoughts.
I limit my exchanges with people outside my very small circle of family/friends/associates to the barest minimum with exception to the time I spend on this forum and some others that have my interest.
Yes i have to admit my family is thee most Sarcastic, Stereotypical , thee most Discriminating bunch you can know and yes we slam on each other all the time also. I don't know it became part of our everyday life. i tried staying away from saying anything when it arises , but so hard when a stupid situation happens and you know you shouldn't.
That is part of having conscious control of those thoughts and not letting them have power over your judgment.
i think you are kind of referring to categorizing other than stereotyping. And i know someone will say whats the difference? categorizing is how we update and store information, its really a scheme that our minds use. While stereotyping is usually a social norm or what we think is one. Thats my view anyways.
I have to agree that I tend to stereotype/categorize everything.... but it is only a base to an idea and is easily altered with new information...