Why Do We Immediately Assume the Worst?

My dental hygienist mentioned that for the first time in her 14 years of being a dental hygienist she had had three different older white male customers begin conversations on inappropriate racial stereotypes.

One customer. sitting in the dental chair, saw an African-American male outside, smoking a cigarette and talking on a cell-phone. “That man looks suspicious,” he said.

“If that same man had been white, the customer would not have remarked about it. Those men probably felt comfortable saying those things because I’m white and still have my southwest Virginia accent”

She did not agree with them but could not really say anything other than to try to change the topic of conversation.

I also read a blogger’s comment about Joe Biden’s socialist agenda. Joe Biden is a Democrat and I don’t think that automatically equates to Socialism. Nor do I think that being a Republican automatically makes a politician or party member a Fascist.

Why do we automatically think the worst of a group of people that we “assume” are not like us because of

  • race
  • appearance
  • socio-economic level
  • sexual orientation
  • country of origin
  • etc.

Do you want to automatically be assumed that you are guilty because you are

  • male/female
  • old/young
  • white or person of color
  • Democrat/Republican/Libertarian
  • fat/thin
  • short/tall
  • Christian/Jew/Muslim/Agnostic/Atheist/Hindu/some other religious/spiritual belief
  • urban/suburban/exurban/rural

14 thoughts on “Why Do We Immediately Assume the Worst?”

    1. True, GP. Funny how we are more prone to be accused when the stereotypes are negative than when they are positive or coincide with our belief systems., At a MAGA rally, Democrats are socialists. At a meeting of Democrats, Trump incited insurrection on January 6.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Love this post! Having been bullied several years ago, I believe that stereotypes are easier for people to go along with because they’re too lazy to spend any time getting to know people. That’s the message I get. Also, ignorant people are always looking for a common enemy to unite against and if they can’t found one, they’ll invent one.

    Liked by 1 person

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