Monday, February 15, 2010

Who Else Wants to Get Rid of Prejudices?

It felt like I was caught with my pants down. I was in the seminar room with around 50 other people. The instructor told everyone a story then quizzed me.

Martin Luther King did it for the African Americans. You can certainly do it for yourself, regardless of the color of your skin. Say, "Today, I stop judging myself by my skin but by the strength of my character."
Photo Credit: "I Have a Dream" by Tony

The story went roughly this way. Father and son went on a drive and met a terrible accident. An ambulance quickly brought them to the emergency room of the nearest hospital. The resident doctor rushed to the surgeon saying, "Doctor, the son has to be operated immediately or he would die."

The surgeon ran to the emergency room but froze in front of the operating table. He told the nurses, "Sorry, I can't operate him. He's my son."

Who was the surgeon?

Would you believe I said, "The surgeon was the son's real father." The seminar instructor said to everyone, "Do you see prejudice at work here?"

How would you have answered the question? Who was the surgeon? Can you see why I felt like I was caught with my pants down?

We all have prejudices:

  • The person's a Brigadier General in the Army. He must be a male.
  • The person's wearing a Rolex. He must be rich.
  • The person's skin is _______. He must be ________.
  • This person's from _________. He must be __________.

What other prejudices do you think you have?

How about the following kind of prejudices? Do you have them?

  • My parents are ____________. I must be a ____________.
  • I come from _____________. I must be a _____________.
  • I'm _____ years old. I am _______.
  • I'm a ___________. How do you expect me to ___________.

These are the prejudices that blow your own dreams away, and you have no one else to blame.

What are your prejudices? Try writing them down. Then burn the paper while you tell yourself never to let these prejudices get into your way again.

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