Sunday, February 07, 2010


I know someone who tells me she is not prejudiced but then calls to complain about talking to "fur'ners" on phone help lines. This same person tells me the our nation is still prejudiced, although we have a black president, but she is not.  She correctly describes the prejudices as more subtle than they used to be, but still there.  She then goes on to say she wishes we could integrate like South Africa did.  I do not know the level of integration in South Africa, and I have not been there...

I work in a prison.  I see prejudice and multiple standards applied by society all the time:  Different judges administer the law more harshly or humanely depending upon who they are, and where they are.  I see poor people of all races receiving harsher judgements than people with money or knowledge about how the system works. 

I see prejudices in other situations.  Many correctional staff assume the worst of offenders.  This is due in part to their training.  Sometimes, making a humane exception is difficult for them, sometimes not.  Some correctional officers assume that as a clinician, I believe everything an offender patient tells me.

Our society has and probably always has had and will probably always have double standards, which are a part of prejudice.  We assume we need to treat different people different ways based on.....What?

I have my own prejudices... I am prejudiced against people who use racial slurs, people who decide about a person based on race.  I am prejudiced against people who make derogatory comments about homosexuality. I am prejudiced against people who make negative comments about women, Yankees or Northerners, Polish people, Native Americans.  I am very prejudiced against people who do not do their best at work, except for extenuating circumstances.

I hear derogatory comments about these things frequently at my work. I understand I live in a conservative stronghold in which anyone who is "different" is suspect.  I blend in, but am very vocal about my different-ness. It shuts people up.  It turns people off. It does not bother me...

This blog has no point to make...It is just some thoughts on prejudice....



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