White people lack empathy for brown people, brain research shows.

New research from the University of Toronto-Scarborough shows that white people’s mirror-neuron-system fires much less, if at all, when they watch people of colour performing motor tasks, and I’m not at all surprised. For years, I just assumed that this was true, and that someone just had to do a study to prove it.

After the United States invaded Iraq and massacred tens of thousands of Iraqis, worldwide terrorist recruitment skyrocketed, as well as terrorist attacks targetting the U.S. and coalition countries. Terrorist leaders cited the Iraq invasion and the deaths of Iraqis as the reason for the attacks. However, White Americans did not buy it, believing it to be a smokescreen for some other reason. It must be Islam, they reasoned, as they grasped at straws.

I then realized that the vast majority of White Americans could not empathize with brown people at a very basic level. For most White Americans, the death and violence of thousands of brown bodies was just part of some abstract ethical argument to position oneself as morally superior to the United States. For most White Americans, brown people dying just meant flickers on the television screen about something happening far away. They didn’t feel the overwhelming anger and sadness they would normally feel when someone they know dies without reason. They couldn’t see the full reality of what death means, when the people who die are brown.

I have seen white people complain online that they cannot see the facial expressions of (East) Asian faces. For many white people, East Asians are like emotionless robots who are efficient at machine-like things like number crunching. Some white people argue that while East Asians may be able to play musical instruments beautifully, they play music without soul.

Most white people just don’t see us as humans. When brown people die through violence, or East Asians express joy or sadness through our faces, most white people’s brains just don’t register the human connection between our bodies and their bodies. When we watch movies and TV shows and read books featuring white protagonists, we have to put ourselves into white people’s shoes to understand the stories and feel the emotions of sadness, laughter, and pride. But people of colour are rarely the protagonists in the media that white people watch, so they rarely or never have to imagine themselves as us.

When I watch some medical shows about a white person undergoing surgery, and the surgeon uses a sharp knife to break open pink skin, uses other instruments to yank out bloody tissue, or uses bloody string to sew up wounds, I can’t help but to squirm. My hands and arms unconsciously cover up the part of my body that corresponds to the area being operated on, as if protecting that part of my body from being penetrated by imaginary surgical instruments. From a purely rational perspective, this makes no sense. If I watch a (white) person being operated on from a third-person perspective, why should my body react as if it is my own body being traumatized?

Mirror neurons are a theoretical construct to explain this type of basic bodily empathy in terms of neurons (brain cells). In macaque monkeys, the neurons in the part of their brains that control bodily movement fire (or activate) when they perform bodily movements. However, neuroscientists discovered that these same monkey brain regions also fire when monkeys watch other monkeys perform the same actions. This discovery was revolutionary, because something that previously could not be explained by science—empathy—may be finally understood in terms of things happening in the brain. When a human empathizes with another human, it corresponds to her neural firing “mirroring” the neural firing of the other person, whose neurons would be firing because she would be performing the task itself.

In the recent neuroscience study on racial empathy by Jennifer Gutsell and Michael Inzlicht, they simply found physical evidence that white people have difficulty empathizing with non-white people:

The participants – all white – watched simple videos in which men of different races picked up a glass and took a sip of water. They watched white, black, South Asian and East Asian men perform the task.

Typically, when people observe others perform a simple task, their motor cortex region fires similarly to when they are performing the task themselves. However, the UofT research team, led by PhD student Jennifer Gutsell and Assistant Professor Dr. Michael Inzlicht, found that participants’ motor cortex was significantly less likely to fire when they watched the visible minority men perform the simple task. In some cases when participants watched the non-white men performing the task, their brains actually registered as little activity as when they watched a blank screen.

Note that nothing about this study suggests anything about racial empathy or lackthereof being hard-wired. The human brain is a living, dynamic organ made up of billions of living, changing neurons. An important concept in neuroscience is brain plasticity, which is the capacity of the brain to change with learning through the reorganization of neural connections. Studies on brain activity are about what the brain is doing, not about the brain being stuck or frozen in some permanent state. Brains don’t do that, unless they are dead.

The article also notes:

The trend was even more pronounced for participants who scored high on a test measuring subtle racism, says Gutsell.

Obviously-racist white people have more difficulty empathizing with people of colour than less-racist white people. This is not surprising. Lack of empathy is linked to racism.

However, the team says cognitive perspective taking exercises, for example, can increase empathy and understanding, thereby offering hope to reduce prejudice. Gutsell and Inzlicht are now investigating if this form of perspective-taking can have measurable effects in the brain.

Or we can break down the white-centric media and education systems that use only white people as a model of humanity. Maybe the researchers should test if people of colour really dehumanize white people as much as white people dehumanize us.


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196 Responses to “White people lack empathy for brown people, brain research shows.”

  1. Kai Says:

    Great post!

    Whiteness works as it does because it was constructed precisely to NOT feel human empathy when brown people are bombed, kidnapped, enslaved, exploited, raped, tortured, by White Empire. This is not a side effect of race, it is literally the raison d’etre of 500 years of whiteness.

    I’m confident that the same test conducted on people of color would produce dramatically different results. I wouldn’t be surprised if a shockingly high percentage of POC actually empathize more with white people than with fellow POC. Perhaps a small minority of POC would fail to exhibit mirror-neuron activity while watching white people, but I’d bet on a VERY low number.

    I am NOT going to check out the Racialicious epic fail thread. I lost my appetite for 101 spaces years ago.

    Peace.

  2. urbia Says:

    I agree, great post.

    I think it’s important to regularly point out that racism isn’t just to harbour hate, resentment, or something equally negative against another race. It’s also the absence of empathy, compassion, or something positive towards another race that one would have toward their own race. So many times, I hear/read white people prefacing racist statements with, ‘I’m not racist, I don’t hate ______ people…’ and then they say something that lacks empathy with brown people, minimalizes the experiences of brown people, or justifies a system that oppresses brown people.

    It’s the latter thing, this lack of empathy, that upholds institutional racism. It’s linked to the complacency that accepts the status quo and resists change with the attitude that if something’s not broken, it doesn’t need fixing. Lack of empathy prevents white people from seeing how broken a system is for brown people.

    “I have seen white people complain online that they cannot see the facial expressions of (East) Asian faces. For many white people, East Asians are like emotionless robots who are efficient at machine-like things like number crunching. Some white people argue that while East Asians may be able to play musical instruments beautifully, they play music without soul.”

    I have heard similar things being said or implied. Sometimes I can’t help but to wonder if the people that said such things also had an agenda. If East Asians really were ‘robots’ that lacked creativity, this would fully justify segregating them in the workplace to heavily repetitive, boring, automated tasks, so that all the fun, creative, and fulfilling jobs would be reserved only for white people: ‘Oh, we’re not racist, we just have to think about this company’s bottom line.’

    I’ve also heard East Asians being compared to autistic children in social situations if they don’t automatically ‘get’ cultural cues from white people. This is said with the implication that if they weren’t autistic, but ‘normal,’ they would have understood social cues and followed along. Rarely is it considered that the East Asian person actually ‘got’ them (especially if the East Asian person was actually born in the West) but intentionally ignored them because he/she simply didn’t like them. This would be a reality check, a blow to the ego of the white person. Instead, an ignorant bubble is upheld: ‘Oh, that Asian person would have gotten my joke/appreciated my charm but he/she’s just autistic…’

    I’m glad the results of this experiment were published. It’s generated very interesting blog posts and comments.

  3. Restructure! Says:

    OMG Kai <3

    Thanks!

    I wouldn’t be surprised if a shockingly high percentage of POC actually empathize more with white people than with fellow POC.

    I’m worried that I might be one of them, since I can switch between the East-Asians-are-emotionless-robots white perspective and the we-POC perspective. I also think that some white people may empathize more with cute kittens being hit than brown people being hit.

  4. NancyP Says:

    I think that it is premature to make many conclusions from such a study. How can they conclude that “empathy” is operating? What is “empathy”, anyway? Ability to decipher social cues? Plenty of psychopaths are great at reading their marks, but don’t give a damn about them. “Empathy” as commonly understood by the public is a moral as well as a perceptual condition.

    Why couldn’t this mirror neuron business be a leftover of early childhood learning by observing the closest possible subjects, one’s own family? You are a baby, lying there watching everyone else in your family go places, and you are stuck. Oh, so THAT’S what you do with these things called legs.

    I’d do a within-race study of mirror neurons. Do people who resemble your parents and sibs evoke more of a mirror response than people who look quite different? Do people who resemble your parents but speak a different language evoke the same, lesser, or greater mirror neuron firing?

    Of course, racism may be a factor affecting mirror neuron firing, but there may be other factors – it seems somewhat unlikely to evolve brain function specifically to deal with skin color, as opposed to “family vs stranger” in general.

  5. Restructure! Says:

    How can they conclude that “empathy” is operating? What is “empathy”, anyway? Ability to decipher social cues? Plenty of psychopaths are great at reading their marks, but don’t give a damn about them. “Empathy” as commonly understood by the public is a moral as well as a perceptual condition.

    No, it’s not that the researchers find the mirror neurons firing and then conclude that the subjects have some type of moral condition. It’s that neural firing “mirroring” was found, and scientists are trying to use that as theoretical model to explain the human phenomenon of empathy. Mirror neurons are a relatively recent discovery, and they may not really explain that much, but the fact that white people’s mirror neurons fire less when watching non-white people perform tasks supports the theory that mirror neurons are relevant to social-based empathy. Since neuroscientists work under the assumption that the mind can be fully explained by things happening in the brain, the possibility that empathy can be explained by mirror neurons is appealing for its explanatory power.

    In this context, “empathy” does not have the exact meaning as the popular understanding of “empathy”. We are talking about a basic, low-level empathy that is just about empathizing with bodies as human bodies. Basic motor action is assumed to be more “primitive” than conscious thoughts, so this very basic low-level empathy may come prior to and be necessary for the higher-level, conscious, more complex empathy as commonly understood by the public (social cues, moral decisions, etc). However, there is no empirical evidence for this yet. Researchers do research like this to find out more and to mainly spread the results to other researchers and scientists so that theoretical scientists may eventually figure out how everything fits together.

    Why couldn’t this mirror neuron business be a leftover of early childhood learning by observing the closest possible subjects, one’s own family? You are a baby, lying there watching everyone else in your family go places, and you are stuck. Oh, so THAT’S what you do with these things called legs.

    I’m not sure how your example contradicts the idea of mirror neurons.

    I’d do a within-race study of mirror neurons. Do people who resemble your parents and sibs evoke more of a mirror response than people who look quite different? Do people who resemble your parents but speak a different language evoke the same, lesser, or greater mirror neuron firing?

    Sure, people should do that.

    Of course, racism may be a factor affecting mirror neuron firing, but there may be other factors – it seems somewhat unlikely to evolve brain function specifically to deal with skin color, as opposed to “family vs stranger” in general.

    Wait, did you even read my post?

    Where did anyone suggest that people evolved a brain function specifically to deal with skin color? Just because something happens in the brain, it doesn’t mean that it is innate, since the brain changes due to learning. Neural firing in particular is something that changes in a fraction of a second.

    Besides, the researchers for this study think it is about ingroup versus outgroup, and race is just an example of a socially constructed group that this would apply to.

  6. Anonymous Says:

    A great post, my only question arises with the images of the Vietnam war, and their effect on the american public.

  7. Restructure! Says:

    I’m not sure about that. That was before my time…

  8. jon Says:

    Great post indeed! The underlying results are fascinating and so is the experimental bias. I’d love to see a more diverse and larger study … I wonder if there are intersectional effects as well.

    Totally agreed about the role of brain plasticity. One more reason I try to avoid environments where I’m constantly subjected to normalization of white male dominance …

    jon

  9. macon d Says:

    I agree with others — excellent post. Thank you for calling attention to and clarifying the important, horrific implications of this study. I too am not surprised, but still, it’s good (?) to have empirical evidence like this.

  10. Daniel W. Says:

    This study was not done on people of other ethnic racial backgrounds was it? Because the link you provided reads as ethnic/racial groups more likely to show empathy for their in group members than out group members. Now, this is a problem because they only used white people, but I’m just questioning if we can simply state this as a white phenomenon. For instance, would the study hold true for black African-Americans who see clips of white, east Asian, or American Indigenous groups…

  11. NancyP Says:

    I am not contradicting the idea of mirror neurons. I am contradicting the use of the word “empathy”, for exactly the reasons you state – confusion with lay meanings around “empathy”. “Neuronal rehearsal of imitative motor activity” seems more apposite.

  12. Kathy Says:

    I am really surprised here, your post title and post do not really match the study, which, as already mentioned, which attempts to suggest that an ethnic group shows less empathy for another ethnic group. How this was changed to white people lack empathy for people of color is questionable. While it does seem true that white people lack empathy,( I have taken that position before), it also seems to me that all people tend to lack empathy for other ethnic groups that they don’t belong to or identify with. I think you distorted this study to suit a blog post, that is a shame. Some of the comments are equally disappointing.

  13. Restructure! Says:

    Kathy,

    The actual results of the study show that white people show less empathy for non-white people, since they only tested white people.

  14. Restructure! Says:

    Daniel W.,

    We don’t know for sure if only white people are like this, but in the very literal sense, the study shows only that white people lack empathy for non-white people.

    In the actual paper, different racial groups elicited different empathy responses. Whites empathized most with Whites, then East Asians, then Blacks, then South Asians. This correlated with other research showing the ranking of racial groups in Canadian society, where South Asians are the most stigmatized.

    So it’s more than just ingroup bias. It’s also about racism against people of colour.

  15. celocelo1 (a non-white person) Says:

    I’m glad you mentioned the in-group bias at work here, as well as the appropriate description of racism. However, this study does not show that this neural behavior is inherently unique based on race; i.e., that people of other ethnicities, controlling for similar context (even IF it could be done/found) would not respond in the same way as the whites in this study. I think that’s equally important to emphasize.

    This study is arguably no more useful to the discussion of racism than if I were to administer an IQ test here in downtown Chicago, for example. Even if I were to find that there were differences along racial lines, without accounting for proper context/variables, it would be no more correct to conclude that intellectual differences are inherently due to race than it is to conclude that white people inherently have less capacity for empathy than non-whites based on this study.

    I think this study actually says very little.

  16. Kai Says:

    This study was worth publishing simply for the fun of watching certain white folks get worked up and sputter random illogic in response!

  17. RVCBard Says:

    It’s really telling and quite disturbing how people are jumping through hoops to invalidate the findings of the study. I think it’s really telling and quite disturbing how, when put in the starkest terms, you have more people trying to justify the inhumane core of racism than trying to challenge or undo that. This study isn’t saying anything that POCs (especially African Americans and Native Americans) haven’t been saying for centuries – that there’s something uniquely and particularly askew about White people. Or, to be more accurate, the construction of Whiteness (which is not the same as being of European descent) and what it does to human beings. What’s even more fucked up is that it’s been made pretty clear that White people are not born like that.

    It’s quite ironic if you think about it. For decades, White people have used and abused science to “prove” the inferiority of POCs, Now that same science is now putting them in that inferior position, and White people are going apoplectic at the merest suggestion that they could be less human/e than POCs,

    It’s like White people want to have their cake and eat it too. They want to seem enlightened for acknowledging systemic racism (aka, “I realize I have White privilege”), but they don’t want to think it taints them as individuals in any way (“It’s just in-group vs. out-group dynamics.”). They want to use the rhetoric and vocabulary of anti-racism, but they don’t want to look at what being racist does to them.

  18. Kathy Says:

    Restructure, I realize that only white people were tested, and I only read the linked abstract, and I don’t think that the results are surprising, but the abstract doesn’t say white people, it says ethnic groups, I think.
    From the comments, I gather that Stormfront ideology is valid, or perhaps this is a form of snark?
    Restructure, I think you are a very careful writer, so the twist on facts surprised me. Also, are comments supposed to be only in agreement with the presented point of view?

  19. Restructure! Says:

    Kathy,

    Restructure, I realize that only white people were tested, and I only read the linked abstract, and I don’t think that the results are surprising, but the abstract doesn’t say white people, it says ethnic groups, I think.

    In studies of implicit race bias, white people prefer whites to blacks, but black people prefer black people and white people equally. Imagine if the implicit race bias researchers only tested white participants and found that whites preferred whites over blacks. They would conclude that it’s just about “people” having an ingroup race bias, and it would be completely wrong.

    In the Clark Doll Experiment, black children preferred white dolls over black dolls. Imagine if the researchers tested only white children, and found that whites preferred white dolls to black dolls. They would conclude that it’s just about “people” having an ingroup bias, and it would be completely wrong.

    From the comments, I gather that Stormfront ideology is valid, or perhaps this is a form of snark?

    I have difficulty understanding your thought process. Is it that you are unaware that learning corresponds to changes in the brain?

    Restructure, I think you are a very careful writer, so the twist on facts surprised me.

    If you think it’s a twist of facts, you probably don’t understand the study and are just taking the abstract at face value.

    Also, are comments supposed to be only in agreement with the presented point of view?

    No, I do not moderate comments except for spam.

  20. Restructure! Says:

    celocelo1,

    it would be no more correct to conclude that intellectual differences are inherently due to race than it is to conclude that white people inherently have less capacity for empathy than non-whites based on this study.

    Are you aware that learning occurs in the brain?

  21. Kathy Says:

    “In studies of implicit race bias, white people prefer whites to blacks, but black people prefer black people and white people equally. Imagine if the implicit race bias researchers only tested white participants and found that whites preferred whites over blacks. They would conclude that it’s just about “people” having an ingroup race bias, and it would be completely wrong.”
    Restructure, I understand your logic about only testing white people, but that doesn’t seem to be the gist of the post.
    I know about the Clark Doll test.
    Maybe I read some of the comments incorrectly?

  22. Restructure! Says:

    Kathy,

    The post was motivated by a misinterpretation over at Racialicious that the study was suggesting that racism was hard-wired. I tried to explain the idea of mirror neurons by invoking a common, lived, visceral experience of POC and/or anti-racists who notice things about white people. The gist of the post is to explain mirror neurons through our (POC) everyday experience.

    You know that photo at the top of the post? When I talk to some white people, their eyes look like that, as they stare back at me.

  23. Race, Politics and Internationalism This Week at People Of Color Organize! Says:

    [...] Restructure! points to brain research that may explain racism, specifically that white people lack empathy for brown people. Insert snarky shot at various political tendencies here. [...]

  24. Tell Me Something I Don’t Know « Yes and no Says:

    [...] Me Something I Don’t Know White people lack empathy for brown people. “Most white people just don’t see us as humans. When brown people die through violence, or [...]

  25. Lyndsay Says:

    Good post. People on that thread keep saying the study was done on White men when it was actually done on 13 White women and 17 White men.
    Obviously we can’t take science results as absolute truth and we especially can’t take the discussion section as absolute truth but I think scientists and social scientists put more thought into their studies than people realize. I think scientists see the world as more nuanced than people think they do. I’ve taken basic research methods and statistics and am dismayed when people either believe everything they hear that sounds good to them is true or seem to think a study is complete crap without even looking at it much.
    I hope they do end up doing a study like this on people of colour in the near future.

  26. Restructure! Says:

    Lyndsay,

    I think scientists see the world as more nuanced than people think they do.

    I agree. I recently realized that when I just post science news articles, many people don’t understand the context. They think that the agenda of science is to prove that everything is hard-wired.

    I tried to look up if there is psychology research on stereotypes about psychology, but I haven’t found anything yet. Ironically, psychologists study stereotyping and psychology, but not stereotypes about psychology.

  27. Lyndsay Says:

    “They think that the agenda of science is to prove that everything is hard-wired.”

    Yes. It’s like a few evolution psychologists and bad reporters ruin it for the rest of the scientists. “There is a difference between male brains and female brains” does not equal “There is an innate/hard-wired difference between male and female brains.”

  28. Restructure! Says:

    It’s like a few evolution psychologists and bad reporters ruin it for the rest of the scientists.

    Wow. Now everything makes sense. How I view evolutionary psychology is how most people view psychology … That is horrible. Horrible. Oh god.

    EDIT:

    If anyone wants to read a good general science blog, I recommend Not Exactly Rocket Science, which is written in plain language, although people who read it tend to be interested in science. Memorable posts are: How objectification silences women – the male glance as a psychological muzzle and Ballistic penises and corkscrew vaginas – the sexual battles of ducks (the latter is memorable just for being weird). Not Exactly Rocket Science moved to Discover Magazine recently.

  29. Lyndsay Says:

    Well, from what I’ve read it was hard enough to convince scientists that the the brain can change even after early childhood so hopefully this idea will get through to the general population eventually.

  30. Lxy Says:

    To me, the most damning illustration of the lack of empathy displayed by many White people is the apathy that they have for the people of Iraq and Afghanistan, where over 1 million people have been killed and millions more maimed, injured, and refugeed thanks to America’s war of aggression, er… “liberation.”

    The American aggression against Iraq is the crime of the century–a crime that most Americans (especially White America) respond to with a bored yawn.

    Behind all its propaganda about diversity, colorblindness, or post-racialism, Americans view the black, brown, red, and yelllow people outside its borders with thinly disguised contempt and arrogance, viewing them as what the Nazis called “untermenschen,”

    http://www.swans.com/library/art12/seths01.html

  31. Anonymous Says:

    Restructure, first, thanks for your explanation and also, patience, more thoughts to come when I get over this cold.

    Lyx, didn’t read your link, but I have to say, most people from Iraq and Afghanistan are considered to be white. The recent Times Square bomber was listed as white.

  32. Lxy Says:

    “Lyx, didn’t read your link, but I have to say, most people from Iraq and Afghanistan are considered to be white. The recent Times Square bomber was listed as white.”

    You should tell that to the millions of people in Iraq and Afghanistan who are treated as “untermenschen,” “sand niggers,” and “hadji girls” by America’s imperial stormtroopers.

    Racism at Core of Iraq Invasion

    http://www.blackcommentator.com/89/89_reprint_iraq.html

    The Rape of the “Hadji Girl”

    http://www.offourbacks.org/RapeOfHadji.htm

  33. White people are different from people. « Restructure! Says:

    [...] White people lack empathy for brown people, brain research shows. [...]

  34. NancyP Says:

    “Empathy” is a rather fuzzy term used to designate a wide range of thoughts and feelings. Some of these are listed below:

    1. Imagining bodily sensation (proprioception) felt by another person performing a motor action (picking up the glass, in the case of the research prompting this thread).

    2. Interpretation of another person’s “body language”.

    3. Strong emotion on seeing a wounded person.

    4. Philosophical conviction that other persons “matter” and are to be treated properly (Golden Rule versions).

    The study covered in the thread is measuring something on the order of #1. The additional variable is something on the order of #4 – people who have varied degrees of racist ideologies (as measured by a questionnaire). Does degree of subject racist belief affect the degree to which the subject notices the common neutral motor activity of a member of the disliked race? What seems to be the intermediate between seeing and motor neuron rehearsal is the degree of attention given to the actor and his movement. Pardon me, but …duh…someone who the subject regards as being neither important (possessing connections, favors, goods; of sexual interest) nor threatening (physical or competitive) is not observed closely.

  35. Kathy Says:

    You should tell that to the millions of people in Iraq and Afghanistan who are treated as “untermenschen,” “sand niggers,” and “hadji girls” by America’s imperial stormtroopers.

    Hey, did not know that you were a German stormtrooping Commie, LOL, that is the result of reading your reply, what say you, Commie?

    I know U think it is soooo easy to point blame.

  36. Moe Says:

    This is soo true. At my work I had a coworkers friend die(non-blood relative), and everyone had sympathy and gave cards and such, including myself. It was good to see everyone come together.

    When MY family member died however, I received nothing, a couple of sorry for your loss statements, but no card or anything(and this was a blood relative).

    Months later a two other coworkers relatives died, and the cards, and the sentiments came out again, only this time I didn’t contribute(what goes around comes around).

    When I didn’t contribute to the sympathy party, the whole department was giving me the evil eye, and saying I was being disrespectful.

    I was not buying it. A life lost is a life lost, I wasn’t going to contribute to someones sympathy when no one contributed to mine when I needed it.

    I totally agree with this article.

  37. urbia Says:

    @Moe

    How hypocritical of them.

    I think it’s interesting that POC are expected to produce visible evidence of loyalty in some way, as though we have to constantly ‘update’ our allegiance to whiteness like it’s some kind of yearly subscription. I don’t buy into that sort of thing either. To me, the ‘evil eye’ is an indication of their sense of racial entitlement and has nothing to do with me as a person.

    To add, everyone mourns in different ways too. It’s not always out there or produced in gifts and cards.

  38. Lxy Says:

    @ Kathy

    Let me guess. You must be a Proud Amurikan. Whenever the bloodstained truth about America is raised, fuckers like you instinctively throw a hissy fit like no other.

    You should go Seig Heil your swastika and stripes flag, and support your beloved stormtroopers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    Check this.

    http://www.collateralmurder.com/

  39. Ryan Says:

    I wonder what effect nationality has on this?

    I assume the study was done by American scientists on white Americans, and maybe this does show some form of apathy towards poc, but does this hold true for all white people?

    I am not American (New Zealander) and I can easily believe that this could hold true for white people here (including myself, despite what I may feel about that fact) towards some of the ethnic minorities over here.

    I say that because people of African descent make up such a extremely small proportion of the total population (as opposed to say, pacific peoples or east asian peoples); because of that I would guess that a lack of empathy towards African people is perhaps not present (to the same degree) in white people from countries that lack the minority (or its presence in media/pop culture).

    I have my own vivid memories of visiting America when I was 9; we passed through some areas that were very heavily black. I felt nowhere near the same kind of unease that I did around areas back home that had a dominant minority population.

  40. Anonymous Says:

    People of all colors have difficulty empathizing with people who are different-looking, different-acting, far away, etc. I would not doubt that as a neurological and biological fact. And from a cold evolutionary standpoint, it makes sense.

    You are programmed to reproduce your genetic material, to protect your offspring. Not only that, but humans are programmed not just to care for their immediate offspring, but anybody representative of their genetic material. If there is an explosion 10 miles from your home that kills 10 people, it is easier to feel and understand that loss than it is for you to get the huge impact of 10,000 deaths 10,000 miles away. You can recognize it intellectually, but emotionally it will be harder to grasp. This is *not* a product of your skin color, this is a product of a biological imperative shared by all living organisms.

    Why didn’t this study similarly test other races? Because sometimes it’s just more satisfying to reassure yourself that whites are TEH EVIL, not that it’s human nature itself that causes the unimaginable (literally!) cruelty and disregard for other human beings’ lives.

    Reading the other comments here only proves my theory that racism (if you could really call it that in this instance) and indifference is a HUMAN trait, not a WHITE trait. The crass generalizations and assumptions based on prejudice here could sink a large ship full of many people very far away, and none of you would care. YOU COLD BASTARDS. (Okay that last bit was an attempt at humor.)

  41. Kathy Says:

    Interesting How anonymous chooses to remain so, might get called some names or had some racist accusation thrown their way by one track thinkers who love to hate. Pity, really.

  42. Kathy Says:

    @ Kathy

    Let me guess. You must be a Proud Amurikan. Whenever the bloodstained truth about America is raised, fuckers like you instinctively throw a hissy fit like no other.

    You should go Seig Heil your swastika and stripes flag, and support your beloved stormtroopers in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    ______________
    According to you, Colin Powell doesn’t count,—white people working min. wage at Wallmart do, genius logic, thanks for the illumination.

    Check this.

  43. Restructure! Says:

    Anonymous,

    Please see the (updated) post White people are different from people. You will see that sometimes, studies about white people are really studies about white people, not people in general.

  44. White people have difficulty recognizing our emotions, but we can recognize white people’s emotions. « Restructure! Says:

    [...] White people lack empathy for brown people, brain research shows. [...]

  45. Frankfurt am Main trauert um Emeka Okoronkwe – nur die Bundespolitik und die Medien nicht | DER SCHWARZE BLOG Says:

    [...] Warum in diesem tragischen Fall anders als in München bei Dominik Brunner überhaupt gezögert wurde, kann die Stadt Frankfurt am Main bestimmt beantworten. [...]

  46. Lisa Harney Says:

    I’m sorry I missed this when it was posted. It’s both interesting and disheartening.

    I’m kind of surprised at how some of the commenters apparently didn’t read the entire post, or perhaps skipped strategic parts – like the statement about how there was a more pronounced trend with those who scored higher on implicit bias tests.

  47. Lisa Harney Says:

    Sorry, “kind of surprised” is not entirely accurate. More like “kind of expected it.”

  48. Susie Says:

    no surprises there – I have always heard people at work say “they all look the same” as if our existences are inconsequential, there is a lot of white arrogance on earth however I think it is more biological than something that is developed, I say this because wherever you go even in Africa where white people who live there amongst Africans have had the opportunity to live amongst other races and as a minority group still show signs of ignorance, excessive stereotyping and disdain for the “natives” case in point South Africa, I think we will only ever win with them by knowing how they think, minding our own business and being proud of our own cultures.

  49. The Killing of Aiyana Stanley Jones: How Can We Say Never Again? « Gender Across Borders Says:

    [...] children after seeing the toys outside? I don’t know the races of the officers involved, but a recent study showing that white people’s mirror neurons don’t react to watching People… is certainly [...]

  50. a girl Says:

    What many of the comments say to me is that the old American middle class is becoming an out group. Particularly the middle class that is older, whiter, less skilled and less educated. White people fit these characteristics often tend to live in rural areas (graying ghettos) where the median age is creeping into the 40’s, or sometimes suburbs. Median age for the rest of the US is about 37. Most younger people have some intolerance towards older people who say dumb things. Today’s youth culture has more minorities than our elder culture.

    White people who live in the suburbs are often the children of the old middle class who have moved closer to urban areas, in one generation or the other, which is why it is a swing territory between the old guard and the new. The cities tend to be hipsters, immigrants and minorities, the youngest group. However, these groups are mixing things up lately. You are getting minorities in the suburbs and rich people moving back to retire in the countryside (although they are picky about where). Statistically, where we live and what our characteristics are can be very interesting. It is counter intuitive.

    I agree there is probably a lot of white people who don’t relate as much to minorities, particularly white people who have more bias. I would also like to note that our inability to relate to people dying in the Iraq War has a lot to do with people in developed countries not understanding the politics or economic realities in developing countries. This is because by living somewhere that our premature death matters, we are ALL PRIVILEGED in some way or another. What empathy minorities have of ‘that could be me’ does not mean they actually expect to die in a third world country.

    Also, everyone has a bias, live with it and accept it.

    Cheers!

  51. Lisa Harney Says:

    Also, everyone has a bias, live with it and accept it.

    No. Many of those biases are harmful and dangerous to people.

  52. a girl Says:

    True. I don’t think that it is good to let harmful biases slide unchallenged. So that is a good point. I do think it is unrealistic to assume that people will become blank slates to be 100% reprogrammed once they start accumulating experiences. Changing people’s views once they are set in place often requires trauma. Wars count. However, it depends on if you think it is worth the price.

    Racism seems to follow different logical paths: some racists are stubborn and refuse to adapt to changing norms. These are the people who live in a society where racism is unacceptable but seek out people who will validate their beliefs. I don’t have that much sympathy for them but do understand that it is a view that loses out long-term as it makes it hard to network. I’ll let the market sort them out. If they are not independently wealthy that kind of attitude will hit them in the pocketbook. Game theory explains a lot about why younger people are nicer than older people who already have jobs and property, so have enough resources to be unpleasant.

    A different subset of racists tend to be in the ignorant camp, primarily older people who lack positive experiences. A lot of racist people live in areas where the only contact they have with black people is from TV crime reports and the only arabs they hear about are suicide bombers. These people have no social contact with normal minorities who for the most part avoid these areas like the plague. They have almost no experiences that would allow them to understand minorities as human. This makes them think that minorities must be inherently pathological because who really would think it was OK to shoot someone over a pair of sneakers? And this is what the TV tells us about young black urban culture. Until the media that is consumed by less adaptive Americans changes, this problem will persist.

    This should tell you who your real enemies are, more adaptive middle class people find it expensive to be racist, extremely wealthy people sometimes benefit from the ability to discriminate. If you can pay people less because they are an out group and there is active discrimination, you can get the same quality of worker for much less money. All you have to do is manipulate people who have no active experience with this out group and they will vote your way.

  53. Dave Says:

    This is basically racist crap, get that chip off your shoulder and get over it! Bloody morons like this that stop integration and progression.

  54. Psych Dreams « Problem Chylde Says:

    [...] Restructure!, in this comment. [...]

  55. Lxy Says:

    “According to you, Colin Powell doesn’t count,—white people working min. wage at Wallmart do, genius logic, thanks for the illumination.”

    What the hell are you babbling about.

    Maybe you haven’t figured it out yet, Prof. Logic, but Colin Powell is a political house negro. He serves the interests of your White-dominated America and its wars. He’s a “Black face” that America so courageously hides behind.

    And last I checked, many White people working at Walmart also support your war criminals in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    And here’s some more examples of your American “empathy” in all its sadism, war porn:

    http://www.newsweek.com/2010/04/30/carnage-com.html

  56. Juliano Says:

    Fascinating! I am of mixed ‘race’ I was born in England and brought up by my mother who is white, whilst my dad who was mainly out of the picture is part African. I was brought up in a white area, and went to an all-white school. As a result I would get singled out and bullied mostly at school, and get called Wog and nigger, brownie and blackie. These insults REALLY hurt me at the time.

    The other day I saw this very moving video Race Doll Test http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0eHIkgh1K_0

    So if it is so that buries beneath bravado there is a lot of self-hatred about the colour of skin because or may traumas throughout an oppressed life, sacred plants help us explore this. We —ALL of us–especially many of the whites need healing

    That non-feeling that whites feel indigenous people would call ‘soul loss’ and this can be restored via sacred ritual. It is like a rigidity that has set and is not flowing any more, or its dynamism is flowing in a rigid frozen pattern.

  57. a girl Says:

    Meh. As far as I know there wasn’t any particular problem with having black kids at our school, or indian kids, or chinese kids or whoever else. I am pretty sure it was more important to take calculus in high school than it was to worry too much about the ethnicity of classmates. Maybe I was just oblivious but it seemed like such a non-issue for the most part. Being a teenager is hard enough without complicating it.

    Although one of my black friends had problems with adults in her life (her parents and their church) after she chose to date a blonde boy we met out and about on spring break rather than a nice religious african american. She felt so discriminated against, she pulled us all into the controversy. I was driving her around so she could see her boyfriend. Now that is loyalty!!

  58. a girl Says:

    @Lxy,
    So Colin Powel is not allowed to have his own opinions because they counter-act your political views? I never got the whole black = same meme. I would have thought that there were a lot of diversity of views held by black people just like there are in all other ethnic groups. Colin Powel is a serious politician. He might have miscalculated with George W. Bush, but so did a lot of people. I never made that mistake but know some people who did. I was too cynical to vote for Bush and thought the Republican Party in general was playing too many games. I did respect some of the career bureaucrats and politicians, I just didn’t like the direction the overall party was going.

    If you want a black politician to beat up, might I suggest Micheal Steel? For his senate race in 2006 he ran ads in richer areas of Maryland suggesting that he was a double minority, a black Republican and that the Democrats would say all sorts of nasty things about him, including that he hated puppies. To compete in poorer sections of Maryland he gave out sample ballots suggesting he was a Democrat.

    http://www.democrats.com/michael-steele-is-a-democratic-cross-dresser

  59. Anonymous Says:

    I’m not sure if this is related to the original blog topic, but I was reading the news about Abby Sunderland, a 16-year-old sailor who was traveling on her own and who recently went missing, and I couldn’t help wondering how much compassion there would be in the comments section if she weren’t a pretty young thing with white skin and blond hair. If she had brown skin and black hair, had a non-Western name, and weren’t as pleasing to the eye, would her being missing even have become news? And if it did, would there have been more comments chiding her parents and calling her stupid?

    It just made me sick, to be honest.

  60. Anonymous Says:

    I see a lot of hate and anger in this thread, and a lot of people patting each other on the back for it. There are so many ways we’ve all learned to attack one another. These days it just seems politically correct to only attack in one direction. I find this whole conversation does nothing to move humankind forward in a positive direction.

  61. goaler Says:

    i guess its only the white race that is racist?

  62. Andreas Says:

    I reject this article, and it’s racist content.

    I am from Sweden, my country tops the list of countries that accept refugee’s (from wartorn countries, countries where political haunt and such proceeds, and of course the number is based per capita). Sweden was “originally” (of course sweden such as alot of the nordic countries were built by immigration, from and beyond what were to be called Europe).

    This obviously rejects your whole article.

    I’ve been robbed twice in my life, both times non-white’s were the offendors. You cant explain that that’s due to the “white-supremist-racism”..

  63. Lisa Harney Says:

    Oh for god’s sake, people. The article says that white people show fewer signs of empathy when viewing people of color than when viewing white people. From my experience, this is simply true. White people dismiss POC concerns as irrelevant, frivolous or outright lies (such as the above comment). Get over your defensiveness and stop trying to use anecdotes to prove the study wrong. If you want to prove the study wrong, you’ll need to go a bit further than talking about how your country accepts immigrants and refugees on the internet.

    I’ve been robbed once in my life, by a black woman, and yet somehow I am able to see that black people are not criminal by nature. But I can see how institutionalized racism that maintains a racist wealth gap can make it easier for black people to turn to crime simply to eat.

    So yes, I do believe that a white supremacist system can lead to crime. It already does, demonstrably so.

  64. fred Says:

    It’s true that the referenced study only envolved white participants. But it’s also true that it mirrors the results from other studies in which non-white participants showed similar responses such as this one:

    http://edition.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/05/27/race.empathy/index.html?hpt=C2

    Yet the blog author uses anecdotal evidence to suggest only whites show less empathy for others. Why rely on anecdotes? Why not find research to support your views? Easy answer — Not only does the blog author’s anecdotes contradict statements made in the study that he himself referenced but there simply aren’t any studies supporting the blog author’s claims of empathic disparity. And I say that after having read the Harvard study on implicitness.

    The thing is, you’re dealing with apples and oranges. There is a difference between empathy and preference. People empathize because they identify. And contrary to the impression you were trying to convey most people of any race will empathize more with someone who looks like themselves. Cut into black skin and an african observer will squirm more than if one had cut into another color because their brain sees a connection to the observer’s own hand. Maybe the blog author is abnormal in this regard. But my guess is that they’re just lying. Otherwise, they wouldn’t have created a whole blog just to smear whites.

  65. Restructure! Says:

    fred,

    Yeah, I’m trying really hard to get access to that Italian (purple people) study, but it’s still in press. I need to check if the African Italians were born and raised in an African country, or if they were born in Italy. Here is a better overview about that study.

    In the Italian study, they found that the empathetic response is linked to the race Implicit Association Test (IAT):

    For example, white Italians are typically quicker to associate positive words with the term “Italian” and negative ones with the term “African”. And the faster they make those connections, the greater the differences in their responses to the stabbed black and white hands.

    However, I commented on the article:

    Were the black Italians African immigrants, or were they born and raised in Italy? Did the black Italians associate negative words with the term “Italian” and positive words with the term “African”?

    When the race IAT is used on American participants, white Americans have a pro-white bias, but black Americans on the whole have both a pro-white and pro-black bias. I assume that this is because American culture as a whole associates whiteness with positivity and blackness with negativity, and black Americans are raised in American culture. I wonder if the black Italians were raised in a black-majority culture, or if they were raised in white-majority Italy.

    In other words, if the empathetic response is linked to the race IAT, then it suggests that for (U.S.) Americans, black people would empathize with blacks and whites equally. The Italian study appears to show something different, and I’m not sure if it’s because the African or black Italians were raised in a different country, or if it’s because Italian race dynamics are different from the that of the U.S.

  66. fred Says:

    I’d be happy to correct the errors in your other hypotheses regarding IAT and country of origin… right after we finish discussing the topic which you initiated in this article.

    You claimed there was a disparity in the amount of empathy whites had for non whites versus the amount of empathy non whites had for whites. And you began your article by saying, “and I’m not at all surprised. For years, I just assumed that this was true, and that someone just had to do a study to prove it.” But the article you cited doesn’t “prove it”. In fact, it says the opposite. And the study I cited also contradicts your claim.

    Given that your article’s claim and what “For years, [you] just assumed [to be] true” have been shown to be false I challenge you to admit your error. But more importantly, I challenge you to admit your prejudice.

  67. Restructure! Says:

    How does the study I cited say the opposite?

    The Italian study may not contradict my claim, because I can’t find out the participant recruitment method.

  68. fred Says:

    “How does the study I cited say the opposite?”

    I didn’t say the “study” you cited says the opposite. I said the “article” you cited says the opposite. You cited an article – not a study. The article was reporting on a study done at the University of Toronto-Scarborough. The article you cited quotes Gutsell as saying, “Previous research shows people are less likely to feel connected to people outside their own ethnic groups, and we wanted to know why.” It does not say, “Previous research shows white people are less likely to feel connected to people outside their own ethnic groups” now does it? But that’s exactly the way you presented it. And that was dishonest of you.

    Perhaps you should admit your error rather than trying to weasel out with some nonsense about the “participant recruitment method” regarding the Italian study. After all, we both know you’ve been caught in a lie. So just scrape together a little dignity and admit your mistake. Otherwise, I’m going to be forced to conclude that you are knowingly and willfully bigoted and the purpose of your blog is nothing more than to promote racial prejudice.

  69. Mephisto Says:

    Fred,

    You too are dealing with apples and oranges. What Restructure is focusing on, is wide scale murder and white people’s continued historical inability to feel empathy, during scenarios that should garner automatic human feelings of concern. Even though they are highly un-relateable.

    What you are talking about, and trying to nullify this study with, has to do with people witnessing personal small scale injury. Something almost all people can relate to because it’s realistic and far more common. There’s no comparison.

  70. Lxy Says:

    “a girl Says:

    So Colin Powel is not allowed to have his own opinions because they counter-act your political views? I never got the whole black = same meme. I would have thought that there were a lot of diversity of views held by black people just like there are in all other ethnic groups. Colin Powel is a serious politician. He might have miscalculated with George W. Bush, but so did a lot of people. I never made that mistake but know some people who did. I was too cynical to vote for Bush and thought the Republican Party in general was playing too many games. I did respect some of the career bureaucrats and politicians, I just didn’t like the direction the overall party was going.”

    Are you related to Kathy? You are babbling about tangential strawman arguments just like her, and carefully avoiding the fundamental issues I raised. Namely, America’s many war crimes, and the American people’s predictable indifference and tacit support for these crimes.

    And I don’t give a damn what Colin Powell’s personal opinions are. I do give a damn about the criminal American institutions and broader policies that he pimps for.

    Here is more about your beloved “serious politician” General Colin Powell.

    He is serious alright. A serious American war criminal.

    Colin Powell: Mass Murderer and War Pimp

    http://rtsf.wordpress.com/2009/05/27/colin-powell-mass-murderer-and-war-pimp/

  71. Lisa Harney Says:

    Fred, this lack of empathy for people of color is in context with a history of colonialization, racist oppression, and white supremacy.

    In the US, everyone is expected to identify with the straight, white, cis man, while no one is expected to identify with anyone who doesn’t fit into those categories. This is why black people tend to be biased toward both black people and white people in the IAT while white people tend to be biased toward white people alone.

    I didn’t read Restructure’s post as saying that only white people can lack empathy, but that the lack of empathy from white people is particularly damaging.

  72. fred Says:

    Mephisto, Lisa, et al…

    I’m not concerned with your scapegoating and grudge mongering mainly because I just really don’t care. I guess you could say I lack empathy for your baloney. :)
    My concern is that restructure is misrepresenting a scientific study to promote prejudice. And I’ve pretty much shown that.

  73. Lisa Harney Says:

    Grudge mongering what? I’m white.

    Also, I don’t think you’ve shown anything of the sort. I think you’re having an issue with Restructure expressing an opinion informed by experience in addition to reporting on the study in question.

  74. fred Says:

    Lisa-

    Thanks for sharing a completely irrelevant and unsupported opinion. Next time try to add something of value.

  75. fred Says:

    Lisa-

    My comments were to restructure, not you. And they concerned her misrepresenting an article to promote prejudice. The article didn’t say what she claimed. And I presented another study which demonstrated her claim was false. Then she tried to weasel her way out of it with some crap about the “participant recruitment method”. What I’m saying isn’t a matter of opinion. It’s a matter of fact. And she knows it. Which is why she shut her mouth.

    Now you’re scape goating and grudge mongering. That’s what you did. Saying you’re white doesn’t change that. And I don’t even care what you are. Unless you have something substantive to say regarding the study then I just don’t really have time to listen to someone who’d argue to the death that water isn’t wet. So do you have something substantive to add to the discussion regarding the study or not?

  76. Mephisto Says:

    Fred,

    Do explain how I was “scapegoating” and “grudge mongering”? It seems like your copy-and-paste response doesn’t fit me all too well. What I pointed out was actually a logical factor. One that you over-looked (and didn’t comment on), whether intentional or not. Your hostility btw, was still apparent even with your smiley face; going by your choice (not to mention order) of the words you used. But I won’t get into that now.

    The only issue with studies like this is that it causes people to take the results at face value. One still needs to let REAL researchers come to an actual scientific conclusion after doing a long series of tests, As there could be (and probably are) unseen variables that researchers haven’t taken into account. THEN release the results to the public on their own. So people don’t make rash and pre-mature conclusions on their own. Now, do I believe that this is true about whites? Personally? Yes. Given the things I hear from a lot (not all) of them about:

    – The Holocaust being a myth
    – The mocking of Arab civilians being killed in the war
    – The twisting of facts about Slavery
    – The downplaying of their history of genocide
    – The denial of White Privilege

    …and many, many other things on the already long list of “white ignorance fueled” examples. It’s odd though, because I RARELY hear comments of the same consistency and caliber, (if ever) from other racial groups. Which is not me saying that has never/can never happen, I just haven’t heard it/seen it. Whether online or in the streets.

    Now having said that, I’m actually empathetic towards whites. I believe that when confronted with this information, those that accept it will want to find ways to work on this problem. Not sweep it under the rug, or ignore it all together when they dismiss it as “white guilt lovers nonsense”.

    The title of this article should really be “White People Disproportionately Lack Empathy More Often. Brain Research Shows.”

  77. fred Says:

    mephisto writes Do explain how I was “scapegoating” and “grudge mongering”?

    When someone manufacturers a laundry list of grievances whether real or imagined I think its fair to call it scapegoating and grudgemongering. Lisa did that in spades. True enough you let it go with some vague reference to “wide scale murder” but I think it merits your inclusion in that criticism. I should, however, point out that right after you protested being included in that criticism you followed up with a laundry list of your own. That was hypocritical and not very bright.

    What I pointed out was actually a logical factor.

    What you pointed out was irrelevant to the comment I made. And was particularly hypocritical since the article I referenced was as relevant to the claims restructure made as the one she herself referenced. In other words, you were cherry picking your criticisms rather than applying the standard equally. But once again, I’m not nearly as interested in the claims she’s making as her misrepresentation of the article to promote racial prejudice.

    The only issue with studies like this is that it causes people to take the results at face value. One still needs to let REAL researchers come to an actual scientific conclusion after doing a long series of tests

    “At face value” is the only way to take results. Raw data is raw data. And I’m reluctant to accept any researcher’s conclusions without adding my own “sanity check”. Other’s conclusions is what one should not take at face value. By the way, I should point out that restructure is not a “REAL researcher” so by your own standard her conclusion isn’t worth squat. Once again, you’ve shown yourself to be hypocritical and not very bright.

    THEN release the results to the public on their own. So people don’t make rash and pre-mature conclusions on their own.

    Like restructure and her readers regularly do.

    It’s odd though, because I RARELY hear comments of the same consistency and caliber, (if ever) from other racial groups.

    That’s odd. Because I’ve found plenty of such comments from other racial groups just on this thread alone. And that includes comments by you, lisa and restructure.

    The title of this article should really be “White People Disproportionately Lack Empathy More Often. Brain Research Shows.”

    That’s the whole point of this disucssion – the “brain research” referenced didn’t show that. I’ve demonstrated that it doesn’t show that. So unless you have something substantive to add you’re simply arguing that “water isn’t wet”. In future comments to me I’d appreciate it if you would address this issue rather than masturbating to your pet grievances.

  78. Mephisto Says:

    I enjoy your primal demonstrations of hostility, which are no doubt stemming from your own hurt feelings over a study that attempts to dig into the core of the “white physique”. Sorry but my point wasn’t “cherry picking” and it was actually 100% appropriate because it IS a logical factor that needs to be taken in account. (Way to use your privilege to turn this discussion to being all about YOU, btw!) If you don’t accept it as such, because you don’t WANT it to be, then that’s not my fault. As it doesn’t make it any less of a factor. It sounds as if you enjoy removing certain variables to help make your case.

    While I’m not completely convinced of these results, I DO think that there is something to this study, as it’s still very early in the experiment to tell. The problem with your hand poke test is that the people MOST LIKELY (subconsciously) visualized the hands as their own; and not one that belongs to a separate person. Which would garner such results. Yet another variable you overlooked/didn’t take into account. If a study that had a person getting attacked or injured (with their face showing), showed the same results as the hand poke test, then you might be on to something.

    Until then, and until researchers do this test properly, keep your dismissals and derailments out of this discussion. While I don’t have a problem with being wrong, (which I will admit to, if I am in the end) it seems like even if study after study shows you’re wrong, that you won’t accept it. As you’re rabidly fighting tooth-and-nail against a new study that could prove there indeed lies something, deep within the mind of whites.

  79. Restructure! Says:

    fred,

    Perhaps you should admit your error rather than trying to weasel out with some nonsense about the “participant recruitment method” regarding the Italian study.

    Before the Italian study came out, I purposely wrote a post criticizing the participant recruitment methods of similar psychology studies so that I wouldn’t be accused of moving goalposts, if a racial empathy study came out that used both black and white participants. Just because you don’t understand how “participant recruitment method” could undermine the study’s conclusions, it doesn’t mean that it’s actually crap, son.

    Which is why she shut her mouth.

    I didn’t shut my mouth. I was actually busy with more important things than some guy who thinks a study’s “participant recruitment method” is irrelevant to the soundness of the study’s conclusions.

  80. Lisa Harney Says:

    Fred, you said your comments were to Restructure, but you named Mephisto and I directly.

    I don’t know what you could possibly mean by scapegoating, unless you think white people have not historically done all of these things.

    I assume you mean by grudgemongering that everyone commenting here is only saying the stuff we’re saying because we hate white people. I don’t think anyone commenting here hates white people, and I think both the scapegoating and grudgemongering accusations are nothing more than rhetorical attempts to shift the discussion away from the actual study under discussion and make it about how white people are supposedly persecuted by people of color.

  81. fred Says:

    mephisto writes, Sorry but my point wasn’t “cherry picking” and it was actually 100% appropriate because it IS a logical factor that needs to be taken in account.

    You accepted one article dealing with neutral actions while rejecting another that had “to do with people witnessing personal small scale injury.” That reasoning is arbitrary and capricious. Therefore, you engaged in “cherry picking”.

    If you don’t accept it as such, because you don’t WANT it to be, then that’s not my fault. As it doesn’t make it any less of a factor. It sounds as if you enjoy removing certain variables to help make your case.

    I evaluate information objectively. It’s my response that is subjective.

    While I’m not completely convinced of these results, I DO think that there is something to this study, as it’s still very early in the experiment to tell.

    Holding views which aren’t supported by the evidence is the definition of “prejudice”. Still, admitted speculation is better than deliberate and willful misrepresentation.

    The problem with your hand poke test is that the people MOST LIKELY (subconsciously) visualized the hands as their own

    The issue you raise with the hand poke experiment deserves consideration. As well it should, it’s the same issue I raised in a previous comment regarding the article restructure referenced.

    Until then, and until researchers do this test properly, keep your dismissals and derailments out of this discussion.

    Au contraire, mon frère! Until researchers repeat the “motor task” experiment with non white participants it’s perfectly reasonable to dismiss restructure’s claims (and your speculations) as unsupported. You can’t base conclusions on what you think the results might be.

    She made the argument. And it’s HER responsibility to prove it. It’s not my responsibility to prove the converse. I need only provide a reasonable doubt for her argument to fail. And it sounds like you think there is a bit more work to do before the research settles this issue. However, I must point out that restructure wrote as if this was a done deal. So whether you realize it or not you just declared restructure’s argument invalid.

    While I don’t have a problem with being wrong, (which I will admit to, if I am in the end) it seems like even if study after study shows you’re wrong, that you won’t accept it. As you’re rabidly fighting tooth-and-nail against a new study that could prove there indeed lies something, deep within the mind of whites.

    I don’t have a problem with being wrong either. It’s just that I so rarely am. But don’t you think you should actually find a study that actually shows me to be wrong before you say something like that?

    Out of curiosity, do you suppose “there indeed lies something, deep within the mind of” blacks which makes them prone to rape and murder?

  82. fred Says:

    restructure writes, “Just because you don’t understand how “participant recruitment method” could undermine the study’s conclusions, it doesn’t mean that it’s actually crap, son.”

    I understand “participant recruitment method” and I read the article you linked before I posted my first comment. But none of that is relevant to your claim because there were no non white participants in the study your article referenced. Therefore, your claim is unfounded and simply demonstrates your own prejudices. If you can’t back your sh* up then you need to retract it with an apology for being such a bigot.

  83. fred Says:

    Lisa writes, “Fred, you said your comments were to Restructure, but you named Mephisto and I directly.”

    Yes. My original comments were to restructure. I addressed you and mephisto because you addressed me.

    I don’t know what you could possibly mean by scapegoating…”

    I already explained what I meant in a previous comment.

    Please remove yourself from this conversation. You add nothing of value. I apologize if that sounds curt. But I’m just not interested in anything you have to say.

  84. fred Says:

    I fudged the italics in my response to Lisa. She can figure it out. Then again, probably not.

  85. Mephisto Says:

    Fred,

    Are you intentionally missing the part where I said that I wasn’t completely convinced by this study, in my last post? I said that I felt there is something TO this study. Going by the constant examples from whites in the past and present, with their remarks offline and online. That’s just my opinion, which you don’t like obviously. But that’s your own issue. This study which did a single type of experiment, that didn’t test the brain in an appropriate manner, (my opinion again) doesn’t disprove anything (to me at least). So like I said earlier, I’ll continue to believe this, I’m until proven wrong by an accurate test.

    About your “black test” comment…

    If white people didn’t have a long and continued history of raping everything on the planet (when it comes to people, cultures, animals, and resources) as well as a continued history of murder, then there might be a cause for such a study. But since whites are still prone to rape and murder to this day, just like every other race, then that issue with blacks isn’t nearly as exclusive as you tried to “jokingly hint”. For there to be a need for such a study on blacks, whites world wide would have to cease these actions almost completely (that means pretty much ZERO, btw) for a very long time.

    Uh-oh, I sense a derailment on the horizon. (Which I won’t respond to btw, as it has nothing to do with this particular article.)

  86. Restructure! Says:

    fred,

    I understand “participant recruitment method” and I read the article you linked before I posted my first comment. But none of that is relevant to your claim because there were no non white participants in the study your article referenced. Therefore, your claim is unfounded and simply demonstrates your own prejudices. If you can’t back your sh* up then you need to retract it with an apology for being such a bigot.

    The participant recruitment method is relevant to the Italian study, where there were black participants. Again, I don’t know if the black Italians were born and raised in Italy, or if they were raised in a black-majority country. I’m still waiting for the actual paper to be published, as it is still in press.

  87. fred Says:

    mephisto writes, “Are you intentionally missing the part where I said that I wasn’t completely convinced by this study, in my last post?”

    No. I acknowledged that in my last comment to you. Go back and re read it. The part about “admitted speculation” refers to you and “deliberate misrepresentation” refers to restructure. In the context of this discussion that should have been obvious.

    I said that I felt there is something TO this study.

    You “felt” there is something to this study? feelings? FEELINGS???!!!! Oh, yes. I remember now. The great study by Bullberg and Shitstein on the scientific validity of “feelings”.

    This study which did a single type of experiment, that didn’t test the brain in an appropriate manner, (my opinion again) doesn’t disprove anything (to me at least).

    You’re certainly entitled to your opinion which is apparently based on feelings. But at some point the preponderance of the evidence makes your opinion untenable.

    So like I said earlier, I’ll continue to believe this, I’m until proven wrong by an accurate test.

    What kind of study would it take before you agreed that water is wet?

    If white people didn’t have a long and continued history…

    Some whites have engaged in misbehaviors. Where we disagree, however, is when you imply this is somehow peculiar to whites and that other groups ie asians, arabs, hispanics, africans, etc haven’t similarly engaged in misbehaviors. If you’re suggesting that the nature of the behavior is some how different or the scope is somehow greater then I’d be perfectly willing to discuss that. But as you said, that strays from the original topic a bit. So why do you keep bringing it up?

    But since whites are still prone to rape and murder to this day, just like every other race,…

    Hold a sec. First you imply there is something fundamentally different regarding whites which makes them predisposed to misbehavior. But then when challenged on the black propensity for rape and murder your defense is that…

    since whites are still prone to rape and murder to this day, just like every other race,

    You can’t have it both ways. So which is it? Are whites different or the same?

    then that issue with blacks isn’t nearly as exclusive as you tried to “jokingly hint”.

    Of course, other races have their rapists and murderers as well. There is no crime which is exclusive to one group. But blacks commit rape and murder at many times the rate of any other racial group. And this isn’t just true of one group of blacks but every population regardless of where they live.

    For there to be a need for such a study on blacks, whites world wide would have to cease these actions almost completely (that means pretty much ZERO, btw) for a very long time.

    Actually, there has been such a study. It’s called “criminal statistics”. And there have also been genetic studies which have identified the genes associated with violent behavior. Would you care to guess who has the highest rates of these genes? Since you guys have shown an inability to read and understand written studies I’ll give you a video. Note this video both quotes and cites original studies which you should have no problem finding online. Also, the intermission on “killer bees” is priceless. hehe

    Uh-oh, I sense a derailment on the horizon.

    Actually, the video isn’t a derailment since it concerns the topics being discussed, namely, a physiological cause for alleged disparity on empathy. And I can think of no greater indicator for empathy (or lack thereof) than violence and aggression. But I can understand if you don’t want to tackle a study on this topic. It’s so much easier to just trust your prejudices. Oops! I meant “feelings”.

    Going by the constant examples from whites in the past and present, with their remarks offline and online.

    What kind of comments? You mean comments like these?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ca_rQyKx_dg

  88. fred Says:

    restructure writes, “The participant recruitment method is relevant to the Italian study, where there were black participants.”

    Let me make sure I understand your objections. You think the Italian study may be inconclusive because you’re unsure of the “participant recuitment method” used to select the black participants? Is that correct?

  89. Phil Jackson Says:

    I hate niggers.

    Moderator edit: N-word is edited out. From now on, the n-word is banned.

  90. Restructure! Says:

    fred,

    I think the results of the Italian study may not be generalizable to racial minorities (in general), since it is possible that the black Italian participants were raised in a culture where they were the racial majority (as well).

  91. fred Says:

    Then how can you base your claims of empathic disparity on a study which didn’t have any minority participants at all? You’re using one standard to question my study while ignoring that standard to defend your own.

  92. Restructure! Says:

    fred,

    The Canadian study (the one this post is about) is also not generalizable to racial minorities (in general), since no racial minorities (never mind who were born and raised in Canada) participated. The Italian study may not be generalizable to racial minorities (in general), since the racial minorities may or may not have been all born and raised in Italy. In both cases, we are unsure whether the results generalize to racial minorities (in general), since racial minorities (born and raised in the same culture as the racial majority) were not explicitly tested.

    However, we know that the racial majority (white people) were explicitly tested in both the Canadian and Italian studies, and I assume that the white people were born and raised in the country they were tested in.

    Again, when we look at race IAT tests with White Americans and African Americans, who are generally born and raised in the U.S., we find that there is an asymmetrical racial relation. Whites have a pro-white bias, but blacks generally have both a pro-white and pro-black bias.

    I think you need to read the claim “White people lack empathy for brown people” more literally, as the empathetic disparity is between their empathy for whites and their empathy for non-white people. My points about my empathy for white people and how people of colour have to put ourselves in white people’s shoes are “real” for independent reasons – because I’m not making up the squirming and the fact that white protagonists dominate fiction in all media is true. The point is that white people are not a convincing model for how people in general behave, especially when we’re talking about race.

  93. fred Says:

    The Canadian study (the one this post is about) is also not generalizable to racial minorities (in general), since no racial minorities (never mind who were born and raised in Canada) participated.

    No shit. How many times did I have to beat you upside the head with that before you finally realized you couldn’t weasel out of it? But you still did a great job trying to downplay it instead of taking full responsibility for your misrepresentation. Admitting the study doesn’t support empathic disparity would be a great start. How about it? Do you think you can scrape together enough integrity for that? I’m thinking a nice moderator edit in big red letters right under the title of the article should do it.

    Something like this should do it.

    Attention readers: The Canadian study cited in this article does NOT support the idea of an empathic disparity between whites and others. Any suggestion that such a disparity exists is the blog author’s opinion and is not supported by the Canadian study.

  94. Restructure! Says:

    Amazing. You’re trying to take credit for a basic point that was in the post in the beginning, that was reiterated again in the “White people are different from people” post, and that was made in the original Racialicious post.

    Even this post says “they simply found physical evidence that white people have difficulty empathizing with non-white people” and “Maybe the researchers should test if people of colour really dehumanize white people as much as white people dehumanize us.”

  95. fred Says:

    Amazing. You’re trying to take credit for a basic point that was in the post in the beginning, that was reiterated again in the “White people are different from people” post, and that was made in the original Racialicious post.

    The “amazing” part is that I repeatedly questioned that in comment after comment and it only took you THIRTY-ONE COMMENTS !!! since I first brought it up for you to get around to addressing it.

    Why was that? Because that wasn’t your intention. And how can I know what your intention was? Because you demonstrated your intentions in three main ways.

    First, rather than simply saying this study dealt exclusively with white participants and may or may not hold for other groups you spent the entire article drawing distinctions between whites and other groups.

    Second, by using exclusionary language such as your repeated references to “us”, “them”, “brown people” and “people of color” as if there is any more commonality between “brown people” or “people of color” than between tall people, short people or people with big feet. Indeed, asians and africans are among the most genetically, physiologically and behaviorally different populations on the planet. In neary every measurable category whites fall mid way in between africans and asians. “People of color” is a meaningless term to imply something which doesn’t exist.

    Third, you spent a great deal of time manufacturing pseudo examples to suggest the results of the motor neuron study are exclusive to whites. You mentioned an emotional expression study, the clark doll experiment as well as more questionable anecdotes such as your alleged squirming during medical shows as well as having to “put ourselves into white people’s shoes to understand the stories…” None of which have any proven link to empathy. Or even “motor neuron firing” for that matter.

    And, fourth, multiple reader comments assumed a disparity and used the allegation as part of an attack to smear whites. While I don’t hold you responsble for your reader’s comments, it is telling that you let it go without so much as a peep while jumping on anyone who questioned the association with empathy or that a study which failed to find a disparity supports your suggestions that a disparity exists.

    But you’ve pointed out your most questionable comments yourself in your last comment, ie.

    “they simply found physical evidence that white people have difficulty empathizing with non-white people”

    As you say in your own article and I quote, “white people’s mirror-neuron-system fires much less, if at all, when they watch people of colour performing motor tasks”

    Fine. I’ve no objections to that. It’s your sneaky switch from “motor neurons” to “empathy” that’s the problem. The study doesn’t say that. You did. And you misrepresented the study to suggest that it supports you in this. It doesn’t.

    As well as you’re implication that, “Maybe the researchers should test if people of colour really dehumanize white people as much as white people dehumanize us.”

    The study doesn’t say this, either. Again this is your misrepresentation of the study to support your biases. The study says nothing about dehumanizing anyone. It’s simply talking about fewer mirror motor neurons firing when someone drinks a damned glass of water.

    And, finally, you have presented NO EVIDENCE WHATSOEVER for suggesting a disparity. Given your other questionable comments and examples suggesting there is such a disparity along with your reader’s comments assuming same I think a moderator note is in order.

    I’m thinking big red letters right under the title of the article. Something like this should do it.

    Attention readers: The Canadian study cited in this article does NOT support the idea of an empathic disparity between whites and others. Any suggestion that such a disparity exists is the blog author’s opinion and is not supported by the Canadian study.

    In hindsight, maybe you should also add a note that…

    The level of mirror motor neuron firing doesn’t necessarily imply empathy.

  96. Kathy Says:

    Fred, your comments are so twisted and convoluted, and your links a few comments up were crap, at least that was my feeling.

    People are genetically a lot more alike than different. Try PBS, Race, the Power of Illusion
    , http://www.pbs.org/race/000_General/000_00-Home.htm

  97. fred Says:

    Kathy writes, “Fred, your comments are so twisted and convoluted, and your links a few comments up were crap, at least that was my feeling.

    So you disagree with me? I don’t give a shit. Now, if you can provide something substantive to back up your opinion that would be another matter. Otherwise, shut up.

  98. Lisa Harney Says:

    Please remove yourself from this conversation. You add nothing of value. I apologize if that sounds curt. But I’m just not interested in anything you have to say.

    So you disagree with me? I don’t give a shit. Now, if you can provide something substantive to back up your opinion that would be another matter. Otherwise, shut up

    Yeah, speaking of not being interested in what you have to say? As far as I can tell you’re not adding anything here, you’re twisting and clouding the issue brought up in the OP, trying to change the parameters of the discussion while presenting arguments that Restructure has either already countered or already presented in this or other posts. You’re trying to blow off everyone else who supports or agrees with her OP and actually ordering us to stop commenting because apparently the only thing that matters here is what you’re interested in reading.

    Kathy actually linked you to something that talks about how race is a social construct, in response to your implication that people of color have more “genes for violence” than white people.

    The video you linked was posted by a youtube user with a pretty clear agenda, and the research he cite completely fails to address the impact of institutionalized racism and the impact this has on wealth, as well as the impact of poverty on crime frequency. It further fails to address the impact of living in a society that demonizes people on the basis of skin color. This article says that environment plays a role as well, something that’s completely ignored in your youtube video.

    I still don’t know what you mean by scapegoating. Europeans have a colonial, imperialist history that is highly documented and easily traceable. This history shows many and various ways white people have oppressed, enslaved, and committed genocide on people of color, of the ways that white European nations have imposed their cultures and values on POC cultures, and in ways that continue to impact these cultures to this day, alongside the cultural and economic exploitation that also continues.

    It’s not scapegoating if it’s true. Any attempt to discuss the prevalence of violent crime in any given population needs to bring far more than genetics into the discussion – genetics alone is a convenient way to pretend that all the other stuff is irrelevant.

  99. Lisa Harney Says:

    And hell, if I’d known that your very next post after I took a weekend break would be an incredibly patronizing “shut up” I would have made a point to comment earlier.

  100. fred Says:

    Lisa writes, “You’re trying to blow off everyone else who supports or agrees with her OP and actually ordering us to stop commenting because apparently the only thing that matters here is what you’re interested in reading.”

    No. I’m not trying to blow anyone off. I’m simply not interested in hearing someone’s unfounded opinions. If you’ve got a logical argument then make it. If you’ve got some facts to support your argument then let’s hear it. But you haven’t done that. All you and kathy did was to say you disagreed. Whoopty-doo! You disagreed. Well, I guess that settles it. I care about the facts. Not your opinions. As soon as you showed me you weren’t capable of it I was done with you.

    Kathy’s PBS link was opinion, not science. The video I linked was quoting from scientific studies and provided references. But let’s assume for a moment that race is indeed a social construct. Does that mean that genes associated with violence are equally distributed among every population? Nope. Don’t you have any basic reasoning skills?

    the research he cite completely fails to address the impact of institutionalized racism and the impact this has on wealth, as well as the impact of poverty on crime frequency.

    You said you were white. Are you rich? Why not? With all that white privilege and institutional racism you must be pretty stupid not to have gotten your share.

    This article says that environment plays a role as well, something that’s completely ignored in your youtube video.

    The video I linked mentioned environment as well as genetics. Yet another example of how you’re a waste of time.

    I still don’t know what you mean by scapegoating.

    Blaming problems that result from irresponsible behavior on other people.

    Europeans have a colonial, imperialist history that is highly documented and easily traceable.

    So does everyone else. With the exception of a handful of groups who were too isolated to do it themselves.

    This history shows many and various ways white people have oppressed, enslaved, and committed genocide on people of color,

    So has everyone else.

    of the ways that white European nations have imposed their cultures and values on POC cultures

    Such as ending cannibalism and slavery? Such as representative government? Such as extending equality to women and minorities?

    and in ways that continue to impact these cultures to this day, alongside the cultural and economic exploitation that also continues.

    There’s the scapegoating I was talking about it. I knew you couldn’t resist.

    It’s not scapegoating if it’s true.

    That’s not true. Something may very well be scapegoating whether it’s true or not. For example, it would be scapegoating to blame all your problems on your parents even if your parents were horrible. At some point you have to take responsibility.

    Any attempt to discuss the prevalence of violent crime in any given population needs to bring far more than genetics into the discussion – genetics alone is a convenient way to pretend that all the other stuff is irrelevant.

    I agree to extent. But I also think “all that other stuff” is a convenient way to pretend that genetics is irrelevant.

    And thanks for playing fred’s wonderful wacky world of witticism. Better luck next time.

  101. a girl Says:

    @Lxy
    So Colin Powel is not allowed to have his own opinions because they counter-act your political views? I never got the whole black = same meme. I would have thought that there were a lot of diversity of views held by black people just like there are in all other ethnic groups. Colin Powel is a serious politician. He might have miscalculated with George W. Bush, but so did a lot of people. I never made that mistake but know some people who did. I was too cynical to vote for Bush and thought the Republican Party in general was playing too many games. I did respect some of the career bureaucrats and politicians, I just didn’t like the direction the overall party was going.”

    Are you related to Kathy? You are babbling about tangential strawman arguments just like her, and carefully avoiding the fundamental issues I raised. Namely, America’s many war crimes, and the American people’s predictable indifference and tacit support for these crimes.

    And I don’t give a damn what Colin Powell’s personal opinions are. I do give a damn about the criminal American institutions and broader policies that he pimps for.

    Here is more about your beloved “serious politician” General Colin Powell.

    He is serious alright. A serious American war criminal.

    Lxy, you kind of missed the point of what I was saying. I said that some black people sometimes think differently than other black people and that’s OK. Just like some Asian people think differently than other Asian people (i looked at your blog). In fact, if you heard some of the stuff that comes out of some Asian people you would conclude they were not all liberals. There are many conservative Asians from all different countries who are sometimes a lot more racist than professinal class white hopefuls, as whites often find it avantageous to moderate on racial issues if they want to advance in life. Not all minorities are judged the same way whites are on their biases or have the same reward benefit structure towards acting on underlying racist tendencies. (Also anadotal but so is most of what we might observe people watching. Many of them can get away with racism easier because they are not judged the same way as they are foreign and more likely to be recent immigrants). :)

    As for your argument on Colin Powell, yeah he worked for Bush, I said as much that was a miscalculation. His reputation has suffered. I don’t honestly know what will become of him but he is a politician, and a very successful politician. Very smart, but politics does not select for the nicest people and as I said he slipped up recently so he might go down. I honestly don’t know. I can’t read the future. If there is mud on him I am not surprised. Please don’t assume everyone is naive just because you are obsessed with a single political issue. I just was objecting to the condecenscion you put into your argument when you called him a “house negro,” a very insulting term designed to put black people with different points of view in their places. Notice I slammed Michael Steele for trying to manipulate people by giving a bullshit argument and playing the ‘black republican’ card.

    I am also not shocked at the duplicity of politicians. I live a half hour away from DC. I grew up watching this stuff when no one else seemed aware that politicians lied. We kick politics around like football, but that doesn’t mean we know everything, just that we have a healthy dose of cyncism and have some idea who’s up and who is down. Politics is a popularity sport, like choosing the high school prom queen. And don’t assume all the politicians you support are necessarily better, policians of all idealogies who are clever find a market demand and exploit it, often preying on single issue voters who ignore every other issue that is likely to effect them. These politicians often cover up their own indescretions and speacial interests, but this is getting harder to do. Who knows? Maybe we’ll actually get a few good people in there. There is always room for improvement and there are always some political issues that are particularly odious and deserve speacial attention, so I will vote with single issue voters if they are going my direction. I try to be reasonable.

    You seem obsessed with america’s war culture, but things shift all the time like they have recently (at least popularly). I would say that we are a country with a great many people who are not prepared to deal with a world in which we have enormous influence and many enemies. Military power is often the most obvious way to deal with the inbalances this causes. I would also say that there are 300 million people living in this country and that anyone who thinks that everyone will have the same point of view over the long term, is terribly naive. Political drift is predictiable up to a point and then everything can change without warning. Don’t expect the substance of politics to change immediately though, just because the Democrats are in office doesn’t change the speacial interests who are much more settled in than either political party. Congressmen need to be elected regularly to stay in Washington, corporate lobbyists have permanant offices. First politician who proposes serious reforms is attacked in well funded primary challenge when they try to get re-elected, and most times they lose. If you want knights in shining armor, they need to be protected.

  102. a girl Says:

    @Lisa Harney Says:
    Oh for god’s sake, people. The article says that white people show fewer signs of empathy when viewing people of color than when viewing white people. From my experience, this is simply true. White people dismiss POC concerns as irrelevant, frivolous or outright lies (such as the above comment). Get over your defensiveness and stop trying to use anecdotes to prove the study wrong. If you want to prove the study wrong, you’ll need to go a bit further than talking about how your country accepts immigrants and refugees on the internet.

    I’ve been robbed once in my life, by a black woman, and yet somehow I am able to see that black people are not criminal by nature. But I can see how institutionalized racism that maintains a racist wealth gap can make it easier for black people to turn to crime simply to eat.

    So yes, I do believe that a white supremacist system can lead to crime. It already does, demonstrably so.

    OK you seem pretty moderate. I’ll address you. I feel like your views are traditional white liberalism, and while I agree with a lot of your points I grew up in the world after Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated and concurrently with Marian Barry decimating the inner city schools in DC. So while I do not have a problem hanging out with well educated African immigrants or well educated African Americans at Howard University or from other professional classes, I do profile by social class when I go into the city. The people who are really ghetto and the most aggressive are poor blacks and sometimes hispanics (although the hispanics tend to viewed as less agressive, they seem to have lesho grew up with an 8th grade reading level of literacy in the closest city to me are African American or Hispanic and if that wasn’t discouraging enough black people in the city make up a disproportionate percentage of people in the city who are infected with HIV. Not what I am looking for in a boyfriend, even if he looks hot on the outside, I know those statistics and a lot of other people do too.

    I feel sorry for the people affected by institutional racism in DC and understand that most of them are poor, less book smart perhaps but not vicious; however like most people I don’t seek them out as I don’t have much in common with them and am not particularly interested in social work. I also am not confident in my ability to steer clear of the dangerous ones, so as I don’t have commonalities with most people in the poor out group I just avoid people who act out, however blacks who want to blend can just put on normal clothes (IE dress nicely) and not act obviously out of control. Most people in the DC area do not relate to people who are poorly educated. I am sure this is true of professional classes in many cities, who are more prevalent than less educated whites in cities as professionals can best afford to live in nice urban neighborhoods. So while we have a large professional black population in both the city and the suburbs, the people who were left behind by capitalism are much more obvious and take up a lot more space in the political gossip columns. While I do not think it is good or right to judge people prematurely it is a very normal trait when we are talking about people protecting their lives and possessions in parts of the city that are deemed dangerous. Not everyone can afford to be lofty at all times and many people who are not otherwise political will keep their eyes out for trouble. Also younger people, the most active group socially, are normal and seek out friends they relate to. Don’t expect youth culture to save the country from racism without changing the underlying economic social constraints.

    Another key problem African American urban culture has is that many people do not perceive them as robbing others to eat. There are too many rap videos glorifying “bling bling” culture and shooting people to settle scores. There are too many dumb kids out there who grow up without any structure in their homes and emulate the stuff they hear on the radio. Is this a structural problem? Hell yeah! Are these kids dangerous? Yes. The songs can very easily teach a kid without emotional support the best way to be a sociopath. Not only that but the kids know that they can get away with almost everything except murder until they are aged 18 (and sometimes that too). This is a very dangerous message to send hormonal teenagers who don’t think things through clearly as their brains are not fully developed. So there is a lot going on and people who pay more attention to ideals are going to have to share the political stage with people who pay attention to crime statistics.

    And yes, I know this is based off of historical racism, but who pays attention to history when present relations are so damaged?

  103. a girl Says:

    Sorry, i was editing the piece and it posted, so my first paragraph has parts missing in the middle. You can kind of skim.

    I was just saying that different outgroups are viewed differently. IE poor hispanic are more likely to come from a village so don’t seem to have as much of an identity crisis. There are still a lot of people in their communities to emulate who are new and still have self respect whereas poor urban blacks (not the black professional class) seem to have more identity issues as they have faced a lot of discrimination and many still don’t know how to drag themselves up now that there are more opportunities. I’m not saying it is easy, but there are scholarships available. I’d like to see more of the investment money go to people at the rock bottom as they need the hand up the most.

  104. a girl Says:

    Don’t shoot the messenger! I am just explaining the logic behind the stagnation of racial harmony. If you want normal people to mix you have to make it worth their while. This only works if it makes sense for the majority of the population to change their behavior and not just people who are obsessed with these kinds of issues. Most younger people are not obsessed with these issues, they just kind of support them but they tend to be more centrist in their support than older liberals who are motivated more by feelings of guilt, younger people are more likely to accept the world as it is with all its warts.

    While youth culture might have elected Obama it is also getting more class concious than it used to be. Just saying, Obama is a Harvard educated lawyer, he doesn’t fit the profile of most black people in the USA. If we go to a society where black people can become president it doesn’t necessessarily mean that black people on average will be better off until they manage to use the system more to their advantage. It should immediately help a few frusterated professionals but the poor will need a lot more help to drag their way out of poverty. At least some of the poor kids have better role models now, that alone makes his election worthwhile.

    Obama will still have to work for his approval ratings, as the honeymoon period of American politics is over, as it should be. People should pay attention to what he is doing, as helping to alleviate racial problems does not make him any less responcible for american foreign and domestic policy.

    And yeah I know this is US-centric, but that’s what I know. I am not as fluent in Canadian politics.

  105. Restructure! Says:

    a girl,

    You shouldn’t be speculating about the behaviours, motivations, and identity issues of African Americans and Latin@ Americans if you are not African American or Latin@ American. That’s very white behaviour.

    Classism is no better than racism, although you seem to be discriminating against poor people of color over poor whites.

  106. fred Says:

    restructure-

    It’s hypocritical for you to tell someone not to speculate on others’ behaviors considering how much speculating you do. At least her speculations are rational.

  107. Anonymous Says:

    Grraaahh! I’m a big fandom geek, and I would *love* to have more favorite characters who were people of color. Fucking *love*, but it’s so hard to find things with non-white casts that aren’t some kind of “urban” bullshit. I wish I had more favorite characters who were women, too.

  108. a girl Says:

    Only half my friends are white so I don’t really feel any more qualified to speak about white thought on the matter as I don’t understand the thought coming from areas that are mostly white. I live in a place which is still lumpy (as to race relations) but otherwise mostly integrated. I’d say it is more cliquish sort of like high school as different groups bunch up together. Most of the groups are open though, it is just kind of flavors. People pick which groups they want to interact with based on their general mood or preferences and there are a lot of people who are between groups who facilitate integration.

    And all politics are local. There aren’t as many poor whites in cities, as they tend to live further out in more rural parts of the country. People talk about what they know and who they see everyday, people who are part of their community. A lot of swing politics and intellectualism is about insularity in local communities.

    @anonymous
    I suspect there will be more charactors from different ethnic groups in the next 10 years. Youth culture is shifting, and the media is all about money and marketing. With luck they will get well fleshed out charactors. It depends on how smart the people in media think their target audience is.

  109. Lisa Harney Says:

    OK you seem pretty moderate

    What does this mean? Restructure’s and Mephisto’s arguments here are more substantial and informed than my own, but they’re, what, too angry? too extremist? to talk to?

    I feel like your views are traditional white liberalism

    I don’t know about that. I think white liberal views tend to diminish the role racism plays in the US, or tokenize it to make a point (like the Advocate’s “Gay is the new black” cover last year), or talk about racism in a way that centers everything on white people and white people’s needs.

  110. Lxy Says:

    @ a girl

    You’re funny as hell, but not in a good way. To repeat, it’s you that have missed–or avoided–my point with your long-winded, diversionary apologia for Colin Powell: America’s atrocities and the role of House Negroes like Powell in perpetrating them.

    Your assertion that the term House Negro is “offensive” is not only a pathetic defense of a war criminal but begs the question: offensive to whom?

    The answer: It’s “offensive” to American apologists (like yourself) that wish to absolve the actions of minorities like Colin Powell who serve your American Empire–an Empire that is hostile to the lives of non-White people around the world.

    To be blunt, it reveals a lot about you that you can so glibly discount America’s routine murder of colored people in Iraq and Afghanistan–all the while giving lectures about diversity among African Americans or dismissing these US crimes as an “obsession” no less!

    In fact, your response is an outstanding example of the lack of empathy that the original article talks about.

    You show the casual disdain and thinly disguised imperial racism that Americans in general and White Americans in particular display towards the lives of “Untermenschen” (as the US military might say) throughout the Third World.

    Below is yet another American crime. Perhaps like Gen. Powell, you can dismiss this too:

  111. elle Says:

    Recently white police offices have been caught on tape beating the piss out of teenage black girls in Washington State. One girl for kicking off a shoe at an officer was brutally punched over and over and a girl caught jay-walking was punched in the face when all she did was push an officer.

    Most whites overwhelming are on the officer’s sides out here. Justifying the violence by saying the girls were out of line, making the girls out to be older than they were (since when is a 17-year-old a woman?) or saying the girls were big and criminals. I think precisely because many whites don’t see brown and black people as human, they can not see a child as a child and beat down a kid brutally when other methods of restrait could suffice.

    I mean, if those were little petite blonde white girls do you think a police officer would find her much of a threat and punch her in the face?

  112. fred Says:

    elle writes, Recently white police offices have been caught on tape beating the piss out of teenage black girls in Washington State.

    Your sentence contains three false statements. First, the incident involved one police officer. Second, there was only one girl who was punched. And, third, she was punched once which most people wouldn’t consider “beating the piss out of”.

    When an officer tells you to be quiet or go away then it’s not option. You’re legally required to obey. Otherwise, you can be charged with interfering with an officer in the performance of his duties. When an officer tells you that you are under arrest and put your hands behind your back you are legally required to obey. Otherwise, you can be charged with resisting arrest.

    My personal opinion is that hitting her was unncessary. On the other hand, anyone who puts their hands on a police officer justifies the officer’s use of force. She interfered with an officer, resisted arrest and put her hands on him. Any normal person would have just taken the ticket and paid the fine. She needs to wear a t-shirt that says “Idiot” so that people can see her coming.

    If anyone is interested in seeing what really happened then here is the video.

    if those were little petite blonde white girls do you think a police officer would find her much of a threat and punch her in the face?

    I don’t know. But if she were an 86-year-old disabled grandma in her bed they would have tasered her multiple times and turned off her oxygen tank until she was unconscious. But there is no racial angle to this story so you probably don’t care.

    http://www.courthousenews.com/2010/06/24/28330.htm

  113. a girl Says:

    @Lisa Harney.
    OK you seem pretty moderate

    What does this mean? Restructure’s and Mephisto’s arguments here are more substantial and informed than my own, but they’re, what, too angry? too extremist? to talk to?

    Good Question. Actually I just wanted to address your point of view, which is one point of view that radiates out from the political center. I actually view Restructure as pretty moderate herself but she has another point of view radiating out of the center as her vital statistics are different so she has a slightly different bias than you would have. I had to look over Mephisto’s arguments as I honestly didn’t remember what s/he said. Some of the other posters, such as Lxy are not at all reasonable, nor rational nor moderate. There are some obvious white racists also. I guess racial posts brings out racists of all predispositions.

    I honestly don’t have enough information on Mephisto to judge moderation. The argument written against Fred was at a level internet tone, but seemed kind of traditional left. So I don’t know if s/he can cross over to understand different viewpoints (the definition of moderation). I’d have to see more material, Restructure as the blogger has more detailed stuff online that she has written for me to go on. She’s a geek and is dynamic, I can understand that. I liked her posts about women’s preference for guys who are physically attractive. That is something that I agree with her on. Racial issues might be too close for her to view with sufficient distance, as she seems a bit more emotional about them.

    The post itself is a bit lazy as the experiment itself seems to have a bias and when research is used to justify assumptions that are too broad it can be inflamatory. In the same vein, I would not have found the bell curve research on minority IQ’s to be at all scientific as the IQ tests themselves have built in biases towards rewarding points for certain types of educational achievement. If formal education in a population is lower (as it was in many African Countries), than the test would measure the people as not as intelligent. This is a problem with the test itself. What it is saying about the people is not meaningful as the information gathered is out of context.

    As the test cited in the post was only measuring SOME white people and NO minorities, than it is not very conclusive, as there are significant gaps in the research. When Restructure wrote the post she did not take into consideration, history or context. So while the test measured lower neuron firing for some white people watching minorities drink water, it can’t be generalized into ‘all white people lack empathy for minorities for all time’ and ‘all minorities emphathize 100% with white people over the entirety of existence.’ The study measured something very specific and she generalized it to mean something very broad and vauge.

    (This is exactly what the Bell Curve Study was guilty of. If taken literally, the Bell Curve study did indeed measure lower test scores for minorities given the poorly constructed IQ tests, but we all know that generalizing this to ‘black people are dumb’ is not supported by the very badly designed research.)

    If she on the other hand said, the reseach says that ‘some white people do not emphasize with minorities,’ I would have agreed with her.

  114. a girl Says:

    It should be Empathize*

    Sorry. It is late and i’m tired.

  115. goaler Says:

    the bell curve study would know a country that was made up
    of total wasp population would be euphoria.

  116. Kathy Says:

    “the bell curve study would know a country that was made up
    of total wasp population would be euphoria.”

    oh you mean like the Irish and the English in New York? oh wait, the Irish aren’t wasp.

    goaler, are you really old enough to post, like more than ten years old or something?

  117. goaler Says:

    Kathy -another bitter person with their head stuck up their ass.
    Look at any survey, the top 20 countries to live in are predominantly white people, and white goveren.
    The 20 worst most corrupt countries are predominantly—– people and —–run!
    so prove this wrong bitter Kathy or are you to old to realize!

  118. Lisa Harney Says:

    goaler, you should read up on Colonialism and Imperialism. The Triangle – Slave – Trade, East India Company, Manifest Destiny. Someone walked all over many of those countries, occupied them for centuries, and left them a mess that’s still not fully cleaned up.

    OTOH, those white-dominated nations? Most of them weren’t colonized and annexed to anyone’s empire. But also, some where, and you should check out what kind of shape they’ve been in.

  119. goaler Says:

    Lisa you should be grateful to live in a top 20White govern country!
    Life would be very hard on youreself in bottom 20 non white whatever country!

  120. Restructure! Says:

    I liked her posts about women’s preference for guys who are physically attractive. That is something that I agree with her on. Racial issues might be too close for her to view with sufficient distance, as she seems a bit more emotional about them.

    What are you saying? Are you saying that when it comes to race, white people would be more objective than people of colour, because white people supposedly have more “distance”? Would you agree that when it comes to gender, women cannot be objective and would be more emotional, while men would be the most objective?

    So while the test measured lower neuron firing for some white people watching minorities drink water, it can’t be generalized into ‘all white people lack empathy for minorities for all time’ and ‘all minorities emphathize 100% with white people over the entirety of existence.’ The study measured something very specific and she generalized it to mean something very broad and vauge.

    I never made a generalization about minorities from the study. I made a generalization about racial minorities based on the media, which portrays mostly white protagonists.

  121. wes Says:

    2 words

    White guilt

    Not only is your study completely wrong, but it is actually the other way around.

    White people actually feel sorry for things that happened hundreds of years ago, while minorities couldn’t care less about some of their less than honorable past.

    While white people adopt non white children, minorities find excuses why they should not adopt white children or children that aren’t of their race.

    I am tired of idiots like you always trying to prove your racist theories while the only people who really care about those who aren’t of their race are white people, that is demographically true, not theoretically.

  122. Anonymous Says:

    White people are the only group that gives the most world aid!
    White people are the only group in the canadian army!
    White people have invented most of the medicines and technology!
    White people have elected a minority as their president,
    which i doubt would happen anywere else!
    White people most of all are the best hockey playing tribe!
    So how come this site hates White folks so much?

  123. fred Says:

    anonymous asks, So how come this site hates White folks so much?

    because it’s actually nonwhites who lack empathy for whites.

  124. Todd Says:

    Conclusion: White people are racists sociopaths who should feel ashamed of themselves and give their stuff to non-whites.

    Experiment: Connect whites to a machines to measure this thing we call mirroring which we have decided to call empathy.

    Look, the needles didn’t move, therefore white men are to blame for everything!

  125. Paula Marie Says:

    I pretty much agree with this article from the attitude of many white people I encounter daily (including those who do feel empathy toward all). Many whites do not appear to feel empathy toward non-whites, however, and I believe this is because they close their world and do not reach out to befriend non-whites. Once they do so, and if it’s a postive experience, they tend to no longer see the other “non-white” friend as someone different – they only see another human being and the prejudice disappears. Whites need to reach further outside their own circle more often, especially toward people from other countries, or they’ll remain in ignorance and miss out on half of life. If this were to happen there would be a lot less war.

  126. Jesus de la Christ Says:

    There are tons of old studies wherein even darker children prefer white dolls when giveen a choice, and countries like Brazil, with both white and black populations and little thought given to the differences, show a preference for whites in their media (billboards, commercials, etc.). I agree with the statements regarding how understanding another person, regardless of race but paying attention to thoughts, feelings and circumstances, empathy increases dramatically. My own experience is that I gain huge respect for people of different races when I’m around them, learning who they are and what they are pursuing in their lives, but then I go back to my own life, and I know that Asian and white people invented this world, Asian and white people are better-looking, not swarthy, and Asians are superior over all. We invented everything along with white people, we run eveerything (aside from the Jews runnning entertainment, and the Internet our people invented will take all the profit out of that with P2P, thus finally destroying the Jews who have sought world domination for ages). Africa didn’t even have a Bronze Age; whites just tried to drag them into the 21st century only to find when they run their own shit, they’re corrupt, forgers, demands pay-offs just to get down the street, and send you fake e-mails promising a fortune if you start them an American bank account. If you just look at the facts and throw away your little inclinations, Asians are the highest level of evolution — we rule mathematics and violin playing — with whites next, Mediterranean people, Arabs are lower, then blacks are the absolute bottom of the evolutionary ladder. That’s why we favor Asians and whites, yo. You know I’m right. You know it, dude. For real.

  127. Restructure! Says:

    Jesus de la Christ,

    Just, no. You are a Disgrasian.

    If you really believe in Asian stereotypes, aren’t you supposed to have some basic knowledge of biology? Race is not a biological category. Please educate yourself.

  128. educate Says:

    Perceptions attitudes and value systems are social constructs; this means that our brains get wired based on what we experience. Prejudice is a learned construct, it is not inherent to any race, and interracial tensions are perpetuated by the default culture….this is why I would like to contribute two points to this argument:
    1. “We can make research say what we want to believe”…. A revelation made in the first session of a graduate course in statistics…. Interpreting scientific data at face value is misleading, and can do much harm if it is used to consolidate existing prejudice that culminate in tragedies that have plagued the human race and are still on-going ….(examples: Gender based violence, apartheid,…genocides…..)
    2. What science is revealing about brain malleability, and our ability to learn throughout life, should be the focus of how to use this knowledge in finding ways to reeducate ourselves, and rethink how we educate our children to respect and value ALL human life and start building the “Brave New World”, a world that rejects all form of prejudice and discrimination based on shape, color or creed …..

  129. Anonymous Says:

    all the white folks have fled toronto!
    all the thugs have invaded this great city!
    crime stoppers will be on overtime all weekend!
    brutal event!

  130. marianne55 Says:

    I had a very charming ethnic Burmese flatmate who turned ut to be a callous and inveterate thief and trouble maker. It was her alleged friends whom she exploited. I did wonder if it was racism, that she lacked empathy for white and black people. She did sometimes make racist remarks but probably she was just a sociopath. Her mother has bipolar disorder, and I think she never developed a relationship with her, so she saw people as things instead of human beings. Apparently, her tribe, the Chakmas of Bangladesh had become the victims of genocide but this was only after she left.

  131. LauraJane Says:

    This is completely stupid. It’s just aksing for trouble. Hey, I’m white you know, and I think this is EXTREMELY rude and horrible, to brand an entire group of people as unempathetic just because they have white skin. Why would you want to conduct research into this area? To spread hate? Unbelivable. I have several black friends and I love them them all dearly, so don’t you DARE bombard me with this ‘science’ to try and convince me that I do not care for my friends.

    Because I do. And there is nothing you can do that will change that.

    And has it never crossed your mind that the door swings both ways? People with brown skin can be incredibly racist too. I’m sorry, but I think this ‘experiment’ is an attempt to spread even more ignorance throughout the world. We have to view people as individuals, and not stigmatize an entire race.

  132. Andre Says:

    Hello,

    I am a 45 y/o biracial man (half black, half white, Ivy League educated, world travelled, and have lived in America’s most racially diverse neighborhoods and cities.

    Some points:

    1) I identify myself as “black”, but most people don’t know what ethnicity I am because my bone structure is caucasian and my skin and hair of a negro.

    2) I love black people with my heart, but prefer to live outside black neighborhoods because there is a real problem overtly agressive behavior and crime in the black community.

    3) America has become increasingly MORE racially polarized since the 1970’s.

    4) The vast majority of White Americans lack empathy for blacks and brown people, but there are many exceptions. This is why I love people like Abraham Lincoln and Jimmy Carter.

    5) As bad as whites are in having lack of empathy for people of color, Amer-Asians and East Asians are even worse, with South Asians and Ethnic Middle Eastern people a little better than whites. Sadly I have to report that Jews are even worse than the average white American in this area, but there are tremendous exceptions such as my personal mentor and other nice Jews I have met.

    6) Black people have the most empthy for their fellow humans of all races, but I have witnessed many ridiculous exceptions to this as well (the Reginald Denny beating, etc.).

    7) If you are a black American, you will get a glimpse of heaven by visiting a foreign country. You will for the first time feel what it is like to be treated by other races as a WHOLE PERSON – and you will not want to come back to the USA. People of other countries hold black Americans in much higher esteem.

    8) Southern California is the most racially divided place in the USA outside of the South.

    9) White people have a marked inability to live in the same neighborhoods with other races on equal terms.

    10) The best way to gain empathy for other races and remove your racists feelings is to fall in love with someone from that race.

    It took all of my 45 years to realize and accept this: The problem is not me, White America, it’s YOU. So get fit: this world is evolving to a multi-racial one and so far you have flunked many Darwinian tests – lack of empathy for the people of Iraq being the most recent.

  133. fred Says:

    Andre-

    I’ve previously met biracials who’ve claimed being mixed makes them neutral or unbiased. But being mixed does not equal objectivity. Some of the worst bigots I’ve known have been mixed. Though it’s not always expressed in the same way, I’ve noticed many mulattoes, particularly middle class, tend to view themselves as better than other blacks. And are yet bitter that some whites don’t accept them as one of their own. Yeah, well… LOL!

    And I think your points kind of hint at this. For example, in point #2 you diss blacks for being violent and aggressive. And so you don’t want to live around them. And then in point #9 you complain that whites don’t want to live around you. Wow. Just wow.

    But this also explains your experiences overseas. The reason “People of other countries hold black Americans in much higher esteem” is because they haven’t been around them enough to experience the “overtly agressive behavior and crime in the black community.” But if they’re around blacks enough I’m sure they’ll figure it out.

    So are you an example of the “overtly aggressive behavior and crime in the black community”? Probably not. And you probably take it personally. I don’t blame you. But you still can’t blame others for not wanting to pet a scorpion.

  134. Restructure! Says:

    Wow, fred is actually saying something intelligent for once in the first two paragraphs of his latest comment.

    The last two paragraphs are racist again, so normality is restored.

  135. fred Says:

    restructure writes, The last two paragraphs are racist again, so normality is restored.

    The last two graphs are no more “racist” than the first two. It’s just that the first two support your biases and the last two don’t.

  136. Andre Says:

    The research talks about the lack of empathy amongst whites for blacks. Empathy is the pertinent concept here. And the research is simply correct.

    White people in America do not see themselves co-existing peacefully with other races and cultures in the United States.

    Rather, in their personal narratives they see themselves as conquistadors, imperialists, cowboys, and pilgrims in a foreign land. This attitude gets projected in our nation’s foreign policy. (Which is why much of the world despises the USA, and is why 20 idiots crashed planes into WTC on Sept 11, 2011 – and why there is much more terrorism to come).

    I will give you a recent personal example of white lack of empathy:

    I live in Beverly Hills. I walk a lot in my neighborhood as a person who prefers using public transportation.

    At least once a day, a person will be walking towards me, see me, then walk BACK to their car to lock their doors IN MY PRESENCE.

    Fine. I understand their fear, and I admit I would feel the same way when I see a lone minority in my neighborhood. But I take the other person’s feelings into account when I make a response or not to my fear.

    It is incredibly painful for one human being to see another human being lock up their belongings in your presence because they perceive you as “bad” without knowing who you are.

    It shows an incredible callousness towards the feelings of another human being to do this. This is where the lack of empathy comes in. Whites do not see us brown and blacks as human.

    Another example happened yesterday: As Californians know, pedestrians are king in crosswalks here – meaning pedestrian has complete right of way in cross walks, and this is vigorously enforced by the police in California. Well some young white tourist (map in hand while driving) came within a few inches of hitting me with the front of his car in a crosswalk in a busy, swank area of Beverly Hills. I walked to his window side to simply explain that this is California, and pedestrians have complete right of way here. That’s all.

    He had his window rolled down. As I began to explain traffic laws (by the way, he did not offer any apology at all) he stepped on the accelerator and left the scene. From this behavior i could see that he did not feel I was worthy of an apology or that he did anything wrong.

    (Well being a 45 year old gentleman first and foremost, but also nobody’s fool – as he took off, I reflexively bi-atch slapped him with cat like reflexes through his open window while his girlfriend was sitting beside him in the passenger seat. I was surprised at how quickly I did it, actually.

    but my intention was to help him understand how California traffic works – and despite that he almost hit me with his car I was genuinely trying to help him in the future – not to assault him.

    but his complete lack of concern for my well-being prompted me to teach him a lesson of another sort.

    I hope it serves him in good stead. There are way too many out of work personal accident attorney’s here in Los Angeles.

  137. fred Says:

    andre writes, as he took off, I reflexively bi-atch slapped him with cat like reflexes through his open window

    Speaking of “overtly aggressive behavior”. Dude, you can’t even control yourself. Sounds like you had a moment there, bro. LOL!

  138. fred Says:

    And while this article has my attention again, I’d like to point out that restructure is the biggest hypocrite in cyberspace. Back in 2009 she wrote an article decrying the abuse of “scientific studies” to promote socio-political agendas. But this “empathy” article shows that she’s addicted to doing just that.

    http://restructure.wordpress.com/2009/09/28/scientific-findings-are-not-public-service-announcements/

    In your previous article you wrote: When a newspaper publishes an article about a recent scientific study concerning humans, it is almost expected that people with a political agenda will pick and choose parts of the article that support their view, and ignore those parts that invalidate it.

    Perhaps you should read that before you decide to pontificate on “scientific studies” in the future?

  139. Andre Says:

    Fred,

    You are exactly the type of white person this study talks about. It would not have phased you one bit to witness this dude run me over in the crosswalk.

    I know you do not live in multi-cultural, multi-racial Los Angeles, because you would be dead by now if you opened your mouth and spouted the views you have on this blog. If a Mexican or a Korean didn’t jack you, some “Angry Tom” – as you put – would.

    What kind of future do you think white guys such as yourself have in this country, by the way, unless you completely change your act?

    You are out of work – your job going to women whom you cannot control – or to some kid in the Phillipines or India willing to work for 1/10 your pay.

    Your white women, when not taking you to the cleaners in divorce court (because you’re too much of a mangina to stand up to their chit), are leaving you for “brothas” such as myself who truly how to please a woman in bed. Give me your girlfriend for one night, and I promise you she will look at you with disappointment thereafter.

    And as this study hints at, you don’t know how to live peacefully with other races due to your lack of empathy.

    If I were you, I’d get me a brown mate so as not to pass down those “lack of empathy” genes you’re harboring.

  140. Jayn Says:

    Responding to racism with sexism. Class act there, Andre.

  141. fred Says:

    Still single at 45 eh? I’m sure the ladies can hardly contain their enthusiasm. But I really didn’t intend this comment to be about mocking you. Mainly because I can’t think of anything I could say that could top the job you’ve just done on yourself.

    I just wanted to point out that I haven’t said anything about “mexicans or koreans”. That was actually you spouting that nonsense. And I noticed you managed to sneak a little anti semitism into it, too. Farrakahn would be proud.

  142. Andre Says:

    “Still single at 45 eh? I’m sure the ladies can hardly contain their enthusiasm.”

    Actually, this is true.

    I was riding the Amtrak Pacific Surfliner train north from San Diego the other day. There was a pretty college sophomore in the seat next to me (Caucasian, I might add). I spoke to her briefly at the beginning of the trip.

    She spent the remainder of the trip leaning over into my seat and touching me with almost every part of her body (including rubbing her bare foot (toe ring and all) against my thigh).

    If you play your cards right, and take care of yourself, life doesn’t have to be like this when you hit 40: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lKrFfp67NDQ

    Peace my brother.

  143. Anonymous Says:

    you are still 2nd class andre.
    nothing more, ever! line with it!

  144. Anonymous Says:

    andre , nothing more than a 2nd class fuck!
    bitter but most face the truth, back of the bus u go!

  145. Richard Says:

    lol i bet black people would score the same at the test and asians too. (show greater sympathy for their own race) Of course its easier to put yourself in the position of a person that looks like you than one who does not.
    But i guess the people doing the test on whites exclusive did not care to find out since its much funnier to demonize white people.

    Cheerio im white so i have to go kill kittens and stomp on flowers.

  146. a white guy Says:

    it’s true. I could give a fuck less about what any brown person (this refers to East Indian specifically, cause I live in Vancouver) does. i never give a second glance to any news of a brown dude getting murdered, deported, or in any other way experiencing trouble. a white or black person I would care way, way more.

    so yes, i pretty much am a racist. but the town I grew up in bred this hate inside me. going to a brown majority school scarred me for life, I hate brown people with an intense fiery passion. it’s how they talk, how they perceive themselves as deserving better than this country (even though they left an utter shithole to come here), they think they’re better than me because they have multiple incomes and can afford expensive clothes and they know that in reality white people can’t do anything because we’re outnumbered everywhere. i hear about brown kids jumping people all the time, it almost happened to me twice. i must say, besides getting my first blowjob, punching a brown guy in the face was the most satisfying moment of my life. I wore my broken knuckles like a badge of honor.

    they treat women like shit too. I boil over with rage whenever I see a brown guy with a white girl or even talking to one at a party. one of my ex’s phoned me crying because a brown guy tried to rape her at a party. thankfully he got chased out. there are exceptions to this rule though, approximately 1 out of every 150 brown guys is chill.

    so yes. I lack basic empathy for brown people, but it’s their own fault.

    P.S. I love black people, i’m fine with mexicans and asians. just brown people. fuck ‘em…

  147. Anonymous Says:

    @ a white guy: I’ve grown up with whites who were went to school with me in a majority Indian school and they were treated like one of us. However as an adult it seems that whites have a belief that they are the only people on earth who deserve kindness. Whites like you are challenged, your post is one of an infant. Sadly you think because you say you love other races that is supposed to enamour you to other races whom you must think care that you love them. By the way ‘East Indian’ isn’t even a descriptor, it’s Indian but from your post where you went to school with brown people you know that. you also feel that other people esp Indians have had an easy time with you people. You think your sly subtle attitudes aren’t realized every day? Sorry moron but Indians have families and exams and businesses to attend to, keep up the meth habit,apparently it’s quite popular with your demographic.

  148. a white guy Says:

    @ anonymous

    I only smoke weed. The only reason Indians have anything is because they bring over like 10 people and they all live and work in one house, like the rats they are. Everyone works, busloads of old dippers go to work on berry farms for fucks sake. What the fuck do you even mean by ‘an easy time’? They treat this country like shit with their illegal houses (multiple suites) and driving SUV’s around fucking suburbia. They always talk about going back to India because they like it better there but if so, why the fuck did they come here? Oh, wait. India is a crowded, dilapidated shithole, and they’re turning my town into one too.

    I mean, when you bump into someone at a party and accidentely spill a couple drops of their drink on their pants, it should be no big deal, right? Nope. I got cornered by six of those rats and had to punch my way out. Watching that dipper’s head snap back, blood spurting in the air, the glasses on the back of his head falling off was pure bliss. Brown people think they’re better than white people. We run the world, though. Stupid fuckers.

  149. Anonymous Says:

    ooh, an internet badass. my hero. <3

  150. Anonymous Says:

    indian males are totally useless.
    what the fuck good are they at anyways?
    their country i have been tolled stinks like shit the moment you get off the plane.
    They wont go down on their ladies but expect it back!
    this from an indian women who wished she married a gora!
    they are also usually fat fucks with guts and no muscle, the laziest fuckers on this earth,
    could not beat the white race at anything except shovling shit!
    i will take youre indian women from you every time!

  151. probablytalkstoomuch Says:

    Wow. I really just need to make an appeal to my fellow white people, the ones acting like fucking fools in this thread and having meltdowns because someone suggested there might be empirical evidence that proves white people aren’t the center of the universe. I know, your minds are blown as much as Galileo’s contemporaries. You’re going through a tough time, maybe you need to contact your local support group for white people that have had their absolute privilege challenged.

    I will be the first person to admit that it’s uncomfortable to be decentralized as a white person. Because I have been, because I’ve fucked up. And I continue to be decentralized when I fuck up and have the good luck of having someone around to check me. I try to be grateful for that instead of defensive or self-pitying because ACTUALLY I should feel blessed that someone went through the trouble to educate my ass. If I ever stop getting that uncomfortable, decentralized feeling, that means I’m doing it wrong. If I ever stop feeling lucky to have people engage me in conversation about this stuff, that means I’m doing it wrong.

    White people. We are raised to believe we are the standard, the true, the real, the right. It’s pretty mind-blowing when you start to really grasp that you aren’t. You just fucking aren’t. REALLY. I don’t have a “grudge” and I’m not self-loathing nor am I do-gooder looking for cookies and pats on the head for being oh-so-progressive. I’m just saying we’re not the center of the universe. I truly believe this is the problem some of you are having; you do not understand this. And actually, at the end of the day, more than just not being at the center of the universe, we as a group FUCK MORE SHIT UP than we do right. So quite opposite from being the true, real and right, our privilege is a kind of a time bomb waiting to blow up all over another human being’s life. Quite the opposite from being infallibly correct and never ever ever needing to qualify or explain ourselves and all of our thoughts and feelings and opinions being inherently valuable and meaningful and important. Quite. The. Opposite.

    So yeah, that’s uncomfortable to think about. But being “uncomfortable” isn’t even in the ballpark of the realities that white privilege create for people of color. Did you people see that video someone above linked to about the modern update of the Doll Test? The tip of an iceberg that I can’t even pretend to understand. Our justice system, our economy, our political institutions, our media, everything is slanted dramatically in our favor. So seriously, can we just suck it up? For the white people in this thread acting like assholes, I’m speaking directly to you: can you please calm the fuck down and act like grown-ups? And for extra credit, just shut up and listen sometimes? Before assuming you have something to educate people of color on in regards to racism, could you possibly consider that you are the least likely to know ANYTHING regarding the topic? And just shut up?

  152. fred Says:

    probablytalkstoomuch chose an appropriate name.

  153. fred Says:

    anon writes, “They wont go down on their ladies but expect it back!”

    Good LORD! Are they really that lazy that they won’t eat some poon? WTF is wrong with them??? Or maybe the chick gots a hygiene problem. I dunno.

  154. probablytalkstoomuch Says:

    Interesting, Fred, that you couldn’t respond to any of the actual text I posted. Cat got your tongue?

    The interesting thing is, you were who I had in mind when I wrote that post. I don’t believe you are having a meltdown because you’re considering the possibility that you might have been conditioned and constructed to believe you are somehow more human and more valuable than people of color, and that this unconscious assumption plays itself out in your daily life without you ever realizing it. I believe that some of the white people I’m seeing in this thread that clearly are responding in a reactionary way (aka like big babies) are doing so because they probably realize there is truth to these findings and it’s hard to accept: these are the people I’m referring to.

    I’m telling them that if they actually care about stopping racism they’ll be grateful they now have this information so that they can start to combat racism first and foremost within themselves. Also, stop pouting like babies because it completely pulls the focus of the whole thing back to white people AGAIN. It can not be about US for a minute. The world won’t end, I promise.

    You? Are a troll. And you keep coming back for more because you’ll take any attention you can get, bad or good. I don’t like to feed trolls.

    Now I’m going to shut up because I’ve already assisted this massive derail far too much and for that I apologize to the OP.

  155. probablytalkstoomuch Says:

    *you WEREN’T who I had in mind when I wrote this post

  156. Anonymous Says:

    probably talks too much sounds like a left-wing , geek ,fag , minority-loving kiss-ass, or maybe just a liberal!
    would never come to the plate for this country, whimp!
    pencil neck and pencil arms im sure.
    get the fuck off our blog and go knit or write a poem!

  157. fred Says:

    anon-

    I couldn’t have said it better myself. hehe

  158. Restructure! Says:

    “Our” blog?

    That’s it. You’re banned, Anonymous/goaler from Mississauga.

  159. Anonymous Says:

    ok then i will go done on you restructure!

  160. a white guy Says:

    @probablytalkstoomuch

    It’s not about being ‘decentralized’. Its about a sham culture replacing a true one, at least in my town.

  161. White people empathize with animals over non-white people. « Restructure! Says:

    [...] does not consciously believe this, but unconsciously, he just can’t empathize with non-white people as much as he empathizes with white people, cats, and [...]

  162. Anonymous Says:

    So, what’s the problem exactly?

  163. a white guy Says:

    today brown kids hit a girl in the face with a bat 3 times.

  164. One Says:

    This is a VERY interesting blog. “Acceptance” seems to be the basic human objective that is lost in the comments. If a study is indeed incomplete then why find the need to defend against it so vigorously?

    So…white people kill a lot. Agreed. Brown people kill a lot. Agreed. Basically, people kill a lot. That’s messed up any way you cut it.

    Friends…we have a messed up value system…regardless of economic distribution. We privilege speed and quantity over quality, and intellectual and economic gain over understanding.
    Our respective worlds are determined by the definitions we construct. Those constructs are the direct results of the questions we ask. The questions we ask are born of the value system we inherit.
    I can accept both the stereotypes and the scientific studies. They all point to the same unfortunate and non-evolutionary thing:
    People are having a hard time relating to one another as human beings.
    My question is: What are we going to do about it?
    For arguments sake, let’s suppose that we DO understand one another. We just don’t like the differences. Should they become more like u,s or should we become more like them? The answer is probably more along the lines of objective humanity wherein we access the quintessential truths of human existence: We eat, we cry, we bleed, we hate, we love, we help, we hurt, we create, we destroy, we live, we die. Sad music is sad music in every culture, no matter the skin color.
    I used to tell my employees and my students that the eloquence with which excuses are made are complete losses of breath and time. Take your time. Own your ideals, and give ONE competent solution to the problem, rather than prattle on aimlessly in excuses, denial, and self-pity. Use your obvious intelligence to SOLVE THE PROBLEM! Novel idea…

    huh, Fred?

  165. d vesey Says:

    One,

    Do you agree that North Americans struggle in the ways you describe within a white supremacist system?

    I’m wondering why you write as if the problem here is people on either side of the color-line failing to understand each other well enough (when in fact, POC tend to understand white people better than the other way around, and even better than they understand their own white selves, because POC are generally pushed into such awareness by still being generally oppressed).

  166. africanblackmilitant Says:

    I just find it AMAZING the way whites have to go through all the hassle, time and effort to fund study after study for something that I could have told them for free ?

    WHITES DON’T GIVE A F**K !!

    Of course they don’t don’t THEY ARE WHITE !!

    Haven’t we learnt that trying to explain to white people the damage that they do, is as silly as me shooting you, then you turning around and saying “Look what your gun has done, that hurt !!”

    “Of course it hurt, that’s why I shot you”

    Whites want to DAMAGE us, that’s why they practice racism. YOU CAN’T SHAME THE DEVIL.

  167. Restructure! Says:

    Considering where this study was done, and that most white people in the study would be liberal and leftist whites, and that this campus has a high number of people of colour, their lack of empathy is not obvious to themselves.

  168. Jayn Says:

    That’s one of the problems with living in a racist/sexist/any-ist society–we become so used to how things are that we don’t recognise how our own thoughts and actions have been shaped until they are objectively measured like this. Even the oppressed sometimes become blind to it.

    People say that racism and sexism are behind us. They’re not, and studies like these make those claims harder to support. They also give us reason to stop and examine ourselves, to try and change these sorts of thought patterns. Some people think that discrimination can be eradicated by pretending it doesn’t exist–the old ‘ignore it and it’ll go away’ idea. It’s really a more active process than that.

  169. anonymous Says:

    Being a victim of non consensual experimentation that involves some kind of electromagnetic brain manipulation, I can say that I’m beginning to lack empathy for brain researchers.

    That being said, it’s too reductionist to say that something isn’t happening in a certain part of the brain and therefore empathy doesn’t exist. Of course even some well-meaning whites might not have as much empathy for brown people as they might want to have, but a lot of that might also stem from constant social conditioning (eg movies where Arabs are bad, latinas are prostitutes, black men are criminals).

    In addition, one cannot judge actions based on brain function or thoughts, etc. That’s why some people oppose terrorist “pre-screenings” via brain scans etc. In other words even if their brain is not functioning with the same empathy for a brown person than a white, who’s to say that they would act differently with regard to one person or another.

    Further complicating the matter would be looking at how brown people empathize with brown people. Even though I am latina, I grew up as various races depending on the political climate in this country and whether the person making the judgement was from my country. Despite seeing myself as primarily “white,” I realized as I grew up that my peers didn’t necessarily perceive me that way. How would I have tested in my reactions toward brown people then? How do other brown people (those who are more “permanently” in that category sympathize with other brown persons)? What impact does the visual diversity or lack of it have on this? (e.g., a brown Arab living in a primarily brown Arab country who doesn’t watch US or British television might respond differently than an Arab American who lives in a white neighborhood). How would a white in a primarily brown school respond? etc.

    I’m totally against reductionism, and brain studies are not excluded from that sentiment. And certainly we are in the unfortunate circumstance of racism compounded by denial of racism (not just speaking about my own group)… but studies of the brain can open up some more questions, I honestly don’t believe that they will resolve them short of “cognitive violations” that go against everyone’s human rights.

  170. Sam Says:

    1. I really enjoyed Andre’s comically ridiculous posts. He doesn’t seem to be aware of how silly he sounds.
    2. The most generous thing I can say about the study in the OP is that it’s crap research that doesn’t mean much of anything, really. Haven’t they heard about ethnocentricity in Canada?
    3.This blog is obviously dedicated to demonizing white people.. or “whiteness” …whatever. It promotes ideas that would be hysterically declared racist if applied to POC. The white-hating bloggers either fail to perceive their own hypocrisy or are quite satisfied to have it. It seems clear that the quest for proof that whitey is the source of absolutely all evil in the universe will go on..and on…and on…
    4. It’s particularly hilarious to read posts claiming that whites don’t understand anyone or anything, (especially themselves), but POC posess perfect insight about the innermost workings of the white psyche. What a great, steaming load of horseshit that claim is. Ah yes, and POC are are beings of limitless, angelic benevolence, while all white people are twisted, monstrous devils. Who, other than yourselves and a few profoundly stupid whites like “One”, are you trying to kid?
    5. Go, “fred”. Give ‘em hell. They deserve it.
    6. I plan to recommend this blog to lots of white people so they can come here and see the sort of unabashedly self-serving, racist poppycock in which “oppressed minorities” and a few neurotic “white allies” are currently wallowing.
    Cheers, whiners.

  171. Franklin Says:

    @Sam

    The only people whining here are whites who hate hearing about what their science has discovered, that the rest of the world knew about them. Your knee-jerking deflection was amusing to watch, as it was clearly from someone who’s parents raised them to think that they are never wrong.

  172. fred Says:

    It sounds like franklin is a graduate of the Paul Reubens School of Forensics.

  173. Franklin Says:

    Sounds like Fred is just as upset as Sam, and for the same reason.

  174. fred Says:

    Sounds like franklin doesn’t know what the Paul Reubens school of forensics is.

  175. Sam Says:

    “The only people whining here are whites who hate hearing about what their science has discovered…”
    But Franklin…
    If I was going to whine, I would take a cue from the experts and cry, “You a raciss!”
    It is so much more authentic when the whine is ungrammatical and mispronounced.

    “Sounds like Fred is just as upset as Sam, and for the same reason.”
    Me? Upset? You flatter me, Franklin. I will never presume to call myself upset until I can muster the twitchy, bug-eyed agitation of Tim Wise when he’s lecturing on race. Now THAT is upset. One can scarsely refrain from paraphrazing Ferris Beuller~ “If you put a lump of coal up Wise’s bum, by the end of his lecture you’d have a diamond.”
    My mere observations of the obvious nonsense here are not even in the “upset” ballpark.

  176. MikeeUSA Says:

    Political Suggestions about women’s Rights:

    * Females be married once they are able to have children (usually at ages: 12, 13, 14).
    * Men never persecuted for having relations with a young female of childbearing age.
    * The marital rape exception reinstated (So that a man is never persecuted for raping his wife).
    * If a man rapes a unmarried/betrothed++ virgin girl he marries her, pays her father some money, and doesn’t divorce her.
    ++Betrothal here meaning female living with husband for about one year before the marriage feast/ceremony.
    * Females barred from bringing claims against their husband (or similar) in court.
    * Females barred from divorcing their husbands.
    * Females barred from collecting monies from husband (child support etc).
    * Other similar things to remove all power from females and make them what men desire.
    (About Child Support: A saying from Bob is: child support is a seat at a Man’s table and a cot to sleep on in his house)

  177. LAINE Says:

    more liberal ethnic lies your tell to your nonwhites selves and other. white donate more money, fight more wars, and set more unwhites free. we carry all unwhites in the usa with section 8 housing, medicaid, free e.r., welfare, wic, afdc, food stamps, reduced electric, disability, free schools, free collecge, free down payments for homes, free school lunches, etc………….. all paid for by whites who never complain and never ask for anything back.
    the same nonwhites never say thank you or admit that whiteys even paying. you just agree with articles like this.
    they call us the racist, yet whites help everyone and we are labeled racist. nonwhites help their own races, THAT RACIST. NON WHITES ARE THE HATERS, THE RACIST, THE USERS OF WHITES.
    get your story straight. admit what your are and what you do, WHITES ALWAYS DO.
    EMPATHY IS WHITE. THAT IS WHY WHITES ARE THE MISSIONARIES AND THE AID WORKERS. WE ARE THE BEST PEOPLE ON THE PLANET. YOU BETTER RECOGNIZE AND QUIT DISPELLING THIS GARBAGE. YOU KNOWS WHAT THE TRUTH IS STARTING WITH THAT AND STOP BELIEVING IN LIES. YOU LOOK DELUSIONAL. PUT WHITES ON THE PEDESTAL WHERE THEY BELONG. YOUR JUST JEALOUS.

  178. LAINE Says:

    and for the record science proves nothing here. that liberal lies, like the ones coming from obamas mouth.
    the facts speak for themselves so does history and that makes this article a fairy tale.
    you only want to be true because your a racist hater and evil is in you. open your eyes blind nonwhites and see and hear the truth, your wrong again.
    whitey might decide to take all his inventions and technology away from you he freely shared, while you say terrible things about him. without good whites the planet would be a bunch like africia’s killing fields. those are the ones with empathy.

  179. aCOLOUREDHUMANBEINGSUFFERING Says:

    everyday hundreds of millions of colored people are suffering, and the rich white people on earth drink smoke weed and party! whites have no care for the suffering human beings who are not white. why do white governments spend tax dollars ON WEAPONS like jets instead of feeding the poor and build schools for the young girls and boys? why do whites vote for terrible leaders who terrorize coloured people by invading there land and kill millions of people? whites play games and dont HAVE A HEART! ONLY WHITE MUSLIMS CARE FOR THE FELLOW HUMAN BEINGS !white muslims are kind and loving.

  180. Crackerjack Says:

    You stop having empathy when you hear “you’re racist!” or “you didn’t let me do (X). you’re racist” so many times. It gets old.

    Sincerely,
    Bitter Whitey

  181. Shemp Howard Says:

    Perhaps someone should run this test on the Art Gallery owners Shoshana Wayne, Jan Baum, Ronald Feldman, Mary Boone and Paula Cooper. And other Racists who have systematically excluded male people of color from the art world. Through an old boy network of disenfranchisement. There is a difference between rejection and non-existence. Though for many male people of color non-existence is these peoples answer to all those who enquirer about opportunities to contribute in a ‘so called’ fair and equal society. I believe that they lack compassion and revel in the glow of their self perceived superiority, importance and racism. That they have perpetuated for decades.

  182. erzulieredeyes Says:

    Black women have troubles in the art world as well, shemp.
    Its true that there are people in the art world that will count you out of their gallery if you are black. To hades with them! Be what you want to be in life!
    In my faith, there is a spirit named maman Brigitte, she is a “white” woman and she holds no racism towards anyone in vodou or the world in general. She works with everybody just like all the lwa do. There are spirits black and white in vodou. My faith has taught me that spirituality can make a person better and open their mind.
    This study is no surprise, you can see the strange way some people look at anyone that’s not “white” as if you are not human. So people that think labeling themselves as “white” and being nasty to others that don’t share that label makes them better, are just delusional.
    They are dust like everybody else and they all have to face god one day.

  183. The ethical corollary of “sex is a basic human need” is that rape is justified. « Restructure! Says:

    [...] who lack basic empathy for women (in same the way that white people lack empathy for brown people and rich people lack empathy for poor people) might imagine that a world where everyone who wants [...]

  184. Shep Says:

    The study you cited was only about drinking a glass of water. If the white people watched videos of brown people getting hurt and then crying, maybe the results would be different.

    By the way I am white and I cry all the time when I read about brown/black/Asian people suffering. So please don’t look at this study as evidence that all white people are a certain way. Looking at some of these comments, I see so many oversimplifications and black-and-white views of the world…

  185. Restructure! Says:

    The study you cited was only about drinking a glass of water. If the white people watched videos of brown people getting hurt and then crying, maybe the results would be different.

    It might be, but then why would white people’s neurons fire when they watch other white people drink water, but not non-white people? The study is comparing the neural firing of white people when they watch white people drink water, versus when they watch non-white people drink water.

  186. ihateItalians Says:

    OMG People identify more with those who look like them. Who would of thought

  187. Lulu Says:

    Yes..I always found it strange that black regardless of where they were born (Canada, Africa, Caribbean) are more easily accepted by white Canadians. While brown people like myself who were also born in the Caribbean are not as accepted by maintstream Canadian culture. Maybe it is that they assume I am reserved or not culturalized to western customs.

  188. Do You Like Worms? Says:

    UTSC what is that, like a canadian version of community college?

  189. Do You Like Worms? Says:

    http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/05/27/race.empathy/index.html

    In any case there’s a link to a study in Italy that didn’t just test white people. and guess what, the results were the same across the board… so let’s see here… comment #1 wrong comment #2 wrong etc etc.

    Some people had some sense though. A few.

  190. Lurker Says:

    Restructure!

    You’re a racist. If you didn’t lack empathy, you could understand that.

  191. Anti-Status Quo Voice Says:

    What ever happened to this blog? It sort of gave up the ghost..?

  192. 67923071leon Says:

    as a white person i don’t give a fuck about non-whites. fuck ‘em.

  193. Fish Jones Says:

    I found out today where East Asians read emotion. Now I KNOW WHERE TO LOOK!

    I just tried this. I watched 2 You Tube videos, one of a white violinist and one of an Asian violinist. 1st time round, I just watch their *mouth*. Nothing else. Yup. the white people all seemed to be into it, and the Asian was completely dead.

    2nd time around, I watched everything but their mouths. The Asian violinist really really really really really came to life all of the sudden. It was breathtaking. She moves the most, she flows the most, she has it all in the crinkle on the corner of her eye. All the white people playing looked positively bored compared to her. SHE was the most emotional person playing–ALL EXCEPT HER MOUTH!

    THAT’S why you look ‘emotionless’. Not because we’re ‘cruel’ or ‘insensitive’ or ‘mean’ or ‘hate other people’ but because WE’RE LOOKING AT YOUR MOUTH!

    Now, instead of dissing us, TELL US WHERE TO LOOK!

    I could really use where to look on Black people too. From this perspective, I’m not uncomfortable around black people because I’m an insensitive jerk or a racist piece of scum. I’m uncomfortable because THEIR NEUTRAL MOUTHS LOOK CRANKY TO ME! They bend down. On a white person, a bent down mouth equals a frown, which means the person wearing it hates you. Where do black people look when reading expressions?

    To see where I’m coming from, imagine trying to read people’s facial expressions your whole life by looking only at their ears and forehead. That’s it. People who can wiggle their ears all seem to be full of life, emotional, human people. People who don’t (or can’t) wiggle their ears seem like insensitive zombies. Then someone tells you to make eye contact. WHAM! Suddenly most of the world is people.

    Unfortunately, it’s ‘racist’ to talk about race, so of course we get left out in the cold when it comes to going ‘yes, I look different than you. That does have meaning. It means that because I look different than you, I read faces differently than you, and because of that, when you sit across the room and we make eye contact, you look happy/sad/cranky/grumpy’. Then the other person says “What?! I wasn’t feeling that at all. I was feeling uncomfortable/bored/nothing/tired’, didn’t you see my eyes? “Uh, no, I was looking at your mouth”. “What the hell were you looking there for?” “When I was a baby, my mom smiled at me and pointed to it?” “Uh. Next time, look at my eyes.’ ‘THANK YOU!”

  194. no. (@numol1) Says:

    @Sam: typical fear-mongering, stereotyping white supremacy from you. “oh no it’s reverse-racism, all YOU PEOPLE must hate whites because otherwise you’d NEVER criticize whiteness which is so PERFECT AND PURE”, etc. etc. blah blah blah. also, that you can go into your long worthless rants and then say “cheers, whiners” really indicates that you’re not even *trying* to be self-aware. in fact you’re only posting in order to lovingly re-read your own words over and over, aren’t you? truly pathetic.

    @MikeeUSA: posting suggestions for MikeeUSA:

    * MikeeUSA stops posting.

    @LAINE: you pretty clearly WANT to believe whites are superior, otherwise you’d notice the endless evidence to the contrary. oh and science proves nothing but “the facts speak for themselves”? you do realize you’re just SAYING WORDS [like Sam] without any actual substance behind them, right? are we “helping everyone” when we commit genocide/enslave/rape/torture/steal? you’re just another white supremacist spewing crap. nice ableist use of “blind” to mean ignorant, also [/sarcasm].

    @Crackerjack: yeah, sure, it’s racialized people’s fault they’re oppressed, damn them for pointing out our white supremacist oppression, because that’s what makes us bigoted and makes them oppressed, sure sure [/sarcasm].

    @Shep: this is not about YOU or how allegedly not-racist you are. and please don’t go into that “don’t generalize about white people, you’re a reverse-racist!!!!!” stuff.

    @ihateItalians: way to intentionally miss the whole point, time-wasting troll.

  195. Glee 3×11 Spanish teacher « biyuti Says:

    [...] high school. This doesn’t help most white people in perceiving the humanity of PoC, not when there is research proving that white people lack empathy for [...]

  196. Tyler Says:

    What a ridiculous, pseudo scientific post. This article is full of holes. Shame on you for promoting racial bigotry. Absolutely pathetic. I think some scientific literacy is important in instances like this where an author claims to associate his or her views with some very flawed research. It’s people like you, however good your intentions may be, make Hitler and his team of scientific wackos sound like Einstein.


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