Friday, November 11, 2005

French riots; an egalitarian lack

Full political and social equality for all. That is what the ideal society model should be based on.
Before I comment on the French riots, allow me to present a context.
The power of stereotypes that support prejudice comes, in part, from a more neutral dynamic in the brain that makes all types of stereotypes self-confirming. People remember more readily instances that support a stereotype, while subconsciously tend to discount the numerous instances that challenge it. For instance, on meeting in a bar, an emotionally warm and open Englishman, who unconfirms the stereotype of the cold, reserved Briton, people may resign themselves to think that he's just unusual or that he's been drinking.
What's my point?
The tenacity of subtle biases may explain why, over the many decades, racial attitudes have become increasingly more visibly tolerant, whilst more subtle forms of bias persist. When asked, such people say they feel no bigotry, but in an ambiguous situation, still act in a biased way, though they give a rationale other than prejudice. Such a situation is now visible in France, though it persists in many other countries, like ours, the USA, etc, sitting just under the surface, hardly visible but very feelable.
I have previously referred to this subtle bias as "undercurrent" in my previous posts. (see an example)
Why is it explosive?
Because the unfortunate recipients of subtle racial bias - that can be endemic in a "highly tolerant" society - have a difficult task proving discrimination.
The outcome is that subtle prejudice spreads like a virus and becomes embedded in society like it is today (institutions). When a situation like France's arises, it is merely a trigger to the stockpiles of many years of hurt and subtle maltreatment, consequences of which are - more often than not - poverty and its by products.
Before we examine the spec in our neighbour's backyard, let us examine the log in ours.
Further reading:
Reading 1


Anonymous acolyte said...

I guess the more globalised the world gets the more segregated it may get.I mean travelling the world and immigration have never been as hard as they have ever been in the world like they are now.

Monday, November 21, 2005 6:31:00 pm  

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