Are We Born Racist?

If you were a homo sapien 100,000 years ago, you probably wouldn’t want to mate with a Neanderthal. We determine our personal type by various physical differences, smell, and skin color. Races can also be considered subspecies, so perhaps we have developed some unethical instincts such as racism in order to mate with our own species. Although this is an anthropocentric perspective, this perspective may be necessary at a primitive level for the continuation of the species.

If you are a white American, the number of your black neighbors can give you an idea of whether you are racist or not. According to a study conducted at the University of Chicago, those with fewer neighbors than black people were against interracial marriage. Also, people with fewer black neighbors, said: “it was a problem for me to vote for a black presidential candidate.” We can explain this situation with the effect of exposure. The mere-exposure effect makes it commonplace for a person to be exposed. When we see black people and become friends with them or interact with them, we start to ignore these differences.

The Puppet experiment, which shows that children think white babies are better and black babies worse, tells us we are fixed-minded towards some congenital races.

In an experiment by psychologist Keith Payne, he triggered the subjects by showing people with black and white skin on a computer screen and then showed a photo of a gun and wrench simultaneously and asked them to name the objects. As you guessed, if the photo you saw first belonged to a black-skinned person, it would be faster to identify the gun. With many implicit associations like this, we can reconcile stereotypes with objects subconsciously. If you think these stereotypes are not yours, you can test yourself.

According to a psychological experiment that measures how we react to religious groups,
a needle was dipped in a hand shown to the subjects in the control group and it was observed that the pain matrix was active. In the original experiment, there were Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Jewish atheists, and Scientology writings. Subjects felt more pain as a needle was inserted into one of their own groups. Likewise, our brains react to homeless people with a generation, we dehumanize them. We know how painful internal and external discrimination has caused in history. This experiment explains how Nazis can easily kill people of Jewish origin.

In a study with babies, babies were asked to match happy and sad music with people’s photos, and researchers discovered that 9-month-old babies associate happy music with their own race and sad music with other races. In the second study, babies watched videos of adults of their own race and adults of other races. Babies of 6-8 months were more likely to follow the gaze of adults of their own race. Racial bias later in life may arise from our lack of exposure to other-race individuals in infancy,” Dr. Lee explained. “Infants will learn from people they are most exposed to.

It is obvious that racism caused the darkest periods of human history. Even if we were born racist, we don’t have to die racist.

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