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User Name Thread Name Subject Posted
GUEST,Bardan Xenophobia 2 (5) RE: Xenophobia 2 23 Mar 07

There was an article in the new scientist recently about the subject. I can't remember exactly what it said, but I think the gist was that we all have a sort of tribal instinct that helps us survive. It cements relationships and when we meet new groups of people, it points us to the ones we have more in common with culturally. These can be good things. Unfortunately theres the flip side which is xenophobia. Racism is a bit of an unnatural thing cos normally, naturally we'd never have met people with different coloured skin etc. I spose it's just another thing to differentiate people with and one with obvious cues as well. No discrete questions required. I dissagree with people who say things like "I don't notice people's skin". Whenever you meet someone you analyze them and skin colour is something people are very aware of even if it is subconsciously. Noticing doesn't make you a racist any more than noticing someone pretty makes you a sexist. The problem comes if you can't go beyond that first impression of "black" or "funny accent" or whatever and start thinking of them as an individual. Once someone is a separate person with their own identity in your head its much harder to generalise. Anyway there's my thoughts on the subject.

I leave you with a quote "there are two things I hate in this world. People that are intolerant of other people's cultures and the Dutch. "

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