Bias / Belief / Equality
Q: I have been told that learned biases form the basis for most inequality. What is your opinion?
Q: I was told you said that every brain has a bias related to safety but that racism is learned. How can that be?
Q. Have you ever experienced discrimination? If so, please help me understand how bias, prejudice, and discrimination differ.
Q: I know some are biased about gender, skin color, and sexual orientation, but I think we are a pretty equalitarian society other than that. Wouldn’t you agree? In my case, I don’t think I have any biases.
Q: Do you think cellular memory has anything to do with problems of equality?
Q. When you “towel dry” after a bath or shower, is the towel clean or dirty?
Q: The national plea for equality has made me think about equality in a new way. Recently, I had a bad reaction to a medication. My nephew, in graduate school, did some research and discovered that it had only been tested on males—so how it would impact females was unknown. I think that is inequality for women regardless of their skin tones. What do you know about this? Equality needs to be recognized for all races and skin tones and gender—PLUS I think it is a much larger problem than that. Please comment.
Q: Recently I attended your week-long seminar and came away with a much more enthusiastic brain. There were some attendees who ask the most ridiculous (or prejudiced, uninformed, rude, unkind) questions. I was amazed how your brain remained calm and civil. How does it do that?
Q: I am somewhat regularly subjected to prejudice because I am in a cross-cultural relationship. We are very happy together, but when the two families are together there is an undertone of prejudice that sometimes isn’t kept in the “undertone.” Sometimes it erupts in arguing about which “race” is better and right in from of the kids. I find it drains my energy. What can I do? We’ve talked about each of us spending time with our own family, maybe a short visit once a week so we are not altogether at the same time. The problem is, I’d like our three children to know both sides of who they are.
Q: Several students in my daughter's freshman class have been rude to her for no apparent reason. Some have called her some rather mean nicknames. She is one of only three Asians in the class. Although she has felt like replying in kind at times, she has refrained from doing so. Many times she has come home in tears not understanding what she did to trigger this. What can she do?
Q: Can you possibly shed some light on "reparation"? I am hearing so many comments like these:
- Many in most countries have been marginalized in one way or another—although that doesn’t make it right. You can never fix the past; you can create a better future.
- Many groups are demanding reparation. The list includes Native Americans to descendant of slaves, those abused by church clerics to underpaid females, individuals who were incarcerated improperly to Hollywood actors who were pressured to “sleep their way” to a role.
- Where is the money going to come from? Collapsing a country financially leaves no future for the next generation. Some countries abroad sold their own people into slavery in exchange for guns. That doesn’t make it right. Are those countries being asked for reparation? There does need to be everyone acting together to make equality a reality, however, perhaps half or more of the people in America had nothing to do with causing the inequalities many groups are identifying. They came to America to avoid the inequalities in their own countries.
Q: My friend said you made a presentation on Safety Bias. What does that mean?
Q: I suppose racism is a type of stereotyping but, hey, everyone does it, right?
Q: In doing DNA research it appears my family may have some connection with people from Ghana and Nigeria. I have started studying about slavery and am amazed at what I am discovering. It seems that the slave trade itself was primarily done by Europeans—and I always thought it was just an American thing. I also read a CNN article in which I learned a lot. I hear the term “systemic racism” but am not clear what that means. Thanks.