So You Think You’re Not Prejudiced?
So You Think You’re Not Prejudice?
Well, don’t boast too loudly. You may just have to “eat crow”. We do it everyday…pass negative judgment on unsuspecting people. Some of the worst kinds of prejudice are those negative judgments that we make against defenseless children.
I was at my oldest son’s ball game. There was this eight year old kid that was screaming his head off. I thought for sure he must have been injured, and someone needed to dial 911 immediately. I watched as his mother calmly walked over to him and began to speak softly. Nothing that she was saying was obviously going to calm him down. After watching for several moments, I made a judgment about this child that I will never forget. I said, “Someone needs to take that child to the bathroom and straighten him out with a good old fashioned spanking.” To which another parent replied, “He’s autistic.”
As Michael said in My Best Friend’s Wedding, I was “the pus that infects the mucus that cruds up the fungus that feeds on the pond scum.” And deserved worse. What gave me the right to make that prejudicial statement? NOTHING! But we still do it.
Have you ever made comments about a person’s clothing, weight, hair, house, car or the way they walk, talk, or raise their children?
The dictionary defines prejudice as “an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason.”
We don’t have any idea what may be happening in the life of other people. We don’t stop long enough to consider another person’s feelings. I sure didn’t. I just decided that this child was a spoiled, unruly brat that needed a firm attitude adjustment.
Thankfully, I had a lightbulb moment that day. I decided from that moment that I would think before I speak. Also, I decided to have empathy for other people. Whatever happened to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you?”