Prejudice defined in dictionary.com
- an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought or reason.
- Any preconceived opinion or feeling, either favorable or unfavorable
I am sure many readers, (including me) think the word is talking about other people. I embrace all races, religions, sexual lifestyles and the economically disadvantaged. I am not prejudiced.
But really, think about it! Think about people you meet, well… not really meet, at a dinner party, don’t you make snap judgments from across the room??
Walking through the mall, don’t you think negative or positive things about the people you pass, judgments about their lifestyle, based solely on a two second view of them in transit?
True confession time, I make am prejudiced. I do hold (undoubtedly unfounded) stereotypes to be fact. I am not proud of them, but I think you have to face it, to combat it !
Ageism – I often make generalizations about the current young generation. I also make generalizations about their parents and parenting styles (both ridiculous since those groups include my children and my parenting style)
Size – I don’t have a reaction to the regular size 12 or 14 females or the guy who is an XL, but I do make snap judgments about obese people. Not fair, I don’t know their story or genetics.
Money – But not how you think, I make judgments about people with great wealth. Different thoughts – misuse, didn’t deserve it , blah blah blah, all stemming from jealousy, no doubt.
Education – I think people with higher education are superior, not sure, I suppose that was drilled in my head my whole life from every direction. Truth is, some very educated people are asses and some very uneducated people are incredibly wise and kind.
So there it is, my list. I am sure I have forgotten some, but the point is admission is half the battle.
There is no denying it, we life in a world that judges. Although we can’t stamp out prejudice, we can be accountable for our own actions and reactions. The next time I make a generalization or an uninformed snap judgement, I will stop myself and reconsider. No group is “all”. People are individuals behind their exterior.