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6 Simple Strategies for Becoming Unprejudiced

This article was originally published to Medium on February 22, 2022 (https://medium.com/illumination/6-simple-strategies-for-becoming-unprejudiced-e0243c2a7bfa).

Just wanted to mention that I noticed this story does not match the egalitarian tone that my blog is meant to express. It was written shortly after I joined Medium, back when I didn’t have as clear of a plan for the types of articles I wanted to write about. However, I felt the article was important enough that it should be kept online anyways.

When the article was posted to Medium, the article was originally published on the ILLUMINATION publication, not Nonmonetized Together. Now, by posting it to write.as, this article can finally be published to Nonmonetized Together. Even though I try to make sure my Nonmonetized Together articles do not speak from authority as much as the article you’re about to read, I felt it should be saved onto write.as because defeating prejudice is a critical component of Nonmonetized Together.

Here are some tips you can use to help yourself treat people fairly and avoid double standards.

1. Question your environment

Sometimes I hear people defend someone’s actions by pointing out that they are a product of their environment. While this may be an accurate explanation, it’s not an excuse. Neglecting critical reflection should not be normalized. It can be all too easy to take what you have grown up with for granted and assume that it is the right way of doing things. Questioning it can help you realize its areas for improvement, keeping you humble while working toward a better future.

2. Don’t reduce individuals to a low number of descriptors

Microsoft Office stock image

Remember that people are complex. Don’t let your entire understanding of a person be limited to a few characteristics — or worse, just one characteristic. If you don’t know someone well, remember that there is a lot about them that you haven’t learned yet, so it’s too early to jump to conclusions about who they are as a person. Some people have done very bad things, but if you define the person by those actions, you will end up forgetting about good things they have done.

3. Don’t describe groups as if they’re individuals

The only exception to this is if you are referring to a requirement of being in a group. Otherwise, you promote prejudice by applying an attribute to an entire group. It’s not even good enough to add that there are some exceptions among the group, as you already manufactured an association between the group and a concept. Negatively depicting a group fosters prejudice against them, but positively depicting a group runs the risk of double standards in the group’s favour.

4. Always try to help people, no matter who they are

Microsoft Office stock image

Obviously, don’t do anything to let yourself get manipulated, but helping people improve is very important. It will allow you to realize that everybody has challenges and that we are all just trying to get by. It’s awful how poorly some people treat abusers, for example. Imagine where society could be if they helped the abuser realize that they are not worthless and decided to help them get over their problems instead of harassing them. Abuser or not, if you do a good job at helping someone, they will appreciate that, which may result in building positive social bonds with them.

5. If you respect others, they will act more respectable to you

It’s that simple.

6. Don’t call out people as hypocrites

You know, not everybody someone will say will be 100% consistent. They may forget other things they said, they may change their mind, or they may struggle to be as motivated as much as they once were. It makes more sense to gently mention the thing that is making the person’s words seem a bit “off,” and ask for some sort of clarification.

#Discrimination #Equality #Prejudice #SocialJustice #Philosophy #Equity #Acceptance #Peace

Medium comments (I’m aware the comments aren’t splitting themselves up properly, I tried asking about it on discuss.write.as but I haven’t gotten a response yet):

Don’t describe groups as if they’re individuals

I agree with you here Kevin.

But I believe that the reverse is also true, in that one shouldn't do it.

To prescribe charateristics (real or imagined) of a group to an individual is, I believe, just as destructive.

Thanks for the read.

Michael Zwierzanski

Yes, that’s true

Kevin the Nonmonetized

You have a point. Like actually people and the world is complicated yet our attitudes have the great responsibility of making the world a better place! Thank you for the amazing article, Kevin! :)

Darian

Glad you enjoyed it

Kevin the Nonmonetized