There's this popular belief that if we are open to diversity it means we don't have biases. This could not be more untrue; everyone has biases. They are engrained in us from an early age and it is our duty to fight against those biases by walking boldly towards them.
Verna Myers has a great Ted Talk on the matter and we would like to showcase it for Black History Month. She encourages us to try three things to help us let go of our biases.
1. Get out of denial. Like we said before, we all have implicit biases that our brain automatically goes to when faced with a situation. In fact, she discusses the results of the implicit association test, a test created by Harvard University, that measures our biases against people. She says that most of us default and prefer white people, even black people prefer their white counterparts.
2). Move toward young black men, instead of away from them. Myers tells us to walk toward our discomfort. It's impossible to change how society influences us if we continue to feed into our stereotypes and discomfort. Instead, the goal is to make ourselves see people as they are, in a more complete way, and not just for the color of their skin.
3). Ending biases. Biases will never disappear on their own. In order to be a real ally we have to be able to say something if we see something. By teaching older generations that their prejudices are not accepted and subsequently teaching the children that racism is unacceptable we can start to enact real change.
SHARE WITH OTHER BOOKLOVERS!
(PIN THIS POST TO PINTEREST)
If you would like to be a guest blogger, contact firstname.lastname@example.org