HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » General Discussion (Forum) » How silence can breed pre...

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 08:42 PM

How silence can breed prejudice: Child development prof explains how/why to talk to kids about race

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/parenting/wp/2015/07/06/how-silence-can-breed-prejudice-a-child-development-professor-explains-how-and-why-to-talk-to-kids-about-race/

(Re not talking to your kids about race in an attempt to be "color blind.)

These white parents are clearly well-intended in this approach, but a colorblind ideology may actually do more harm than good.

While parents may assume that their own egalitarian attitudes will rub off on their children, this is usually not the case. In one of my studies I found that children were more biased than their parents, and there was no direct association between the parents’ and children’s attitudes. Instead, the children’s attitudes matched their perceptions of the parents’ attitudes.

Almost half of the 5 to 7-year-old white children in the study said they did not know whether their parents liked black people, and about 35 percent either said that their parents would not approve of them having a black friend or they did not know if their parents would approve. This was despite the fact that their parents reported positive racial attitudes.

So in the absence of conversation, children are apt to make assumptions that may not be true, but these assumptions often reflect the biases the children are exposed to in the world around them. In other words, the silence can breed prejudice.

10 replies, 1807 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 10 replies Author Time Post
Reply How silence can breed prejudice: Child development prof explains how/why to talk to kids about race (Original post)
gollygee Jul 2016 OP
SheilaT Jul 2016 #1
elleng Jul 2016 #2
seabeyond Jul 2016 #3
xfundy Jul 2016 #4
gollygee Jul 2016 #5
EllieBC Jul 2016 #6
gollygee Jul 2016 #7
EllieBC Jul 2016 #8
Arkansas Granny Jul 2016 #9
gollygee Jul 2016 #10

Response to gollygee (Original post)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 08:46 PM

1. I know that when my children were young I had no idea

 

how to talk to them about race. We're white, and we lived in a very white city, Overland Park, Kansas. I could go days at a time without seeing a black person. There were literally two or three black kids in the neighborhood elementary school.

I did go with the color blind approach, and in a recent conversation with one of my two sons (they're now grown) he said that he and his friends thought it was totally stupid that we adults pretended that race wasn't out there. Looking back, I should have just spoken openly and casually.

They did get the message that we did not think white people were better, and that we were more than okay with them having friends from outside their own particular race or ethnicity.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gollygee (Original post)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 08:49 PM

2. Thanks.

Spreading this around.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gollygee (Original post)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:04 PM

3. And we are still having conversation with boys at 18 and 21. Talk to kids, age appropriate, always

 

Fluid. Kids are that good.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gollygee (Original post)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:09 PM

4. "Race" is a concept developed over 100 years ago.

Some people are lighter, some are darker, some have almond-shaped eyes. They're all people, and those who want to divide us use those differences to their profit. I wish we'd just all have sex with each other so we become the same. Then, of course,religion would serve to divide us, and of course political BS.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to xfundy (Reply #4)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:12 PM

5. Way, way over 100 years

Since colonization anyway.

And it isn't going to magically go away. Human beings won't ever all become the same skin tone. We have to deal with this.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gollygee (Original post)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:15 PM

6. That makes sense.

Like anything, children will learn from somewhere or someone. So, better from you!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to EllieBC (Reply #6)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:16 PM

7. Yep, just like sex ed

Not talking about it doesn't mean they aren't learning anything. It just means you aren't involved in the teaching.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gollygee (Reply #7)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:18 PM

8. That's what I thought of too.

Kids who are taught nothing tend to end up with higher rates of teen pregnancy, no?

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to gollygee (Original post)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:40 PM

9. When my kids were young, we lived in a mixed race neighborhood and

their grade school was predominantly black. I believe it was a good experience for them. They learned that color was just skin and underneath that we have many more similarities than differences.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to Arkansas Granny (Reply #9)

Fri Jul 8, 2016, 09:42 PM

10. My neighborhood and school district were similar growing up

But everything seems to be re-segregated. Segregation is the way things are done again. We've definitely gone backward since the baby boomers stopped doing anti-racism work. Sadly, that's the last generation to do that work on a large scale.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread