What If Racism Could Be Measured Scientifically?
There was a story on CNN on how the price of wine could actually affect the human brain’s ability to interpret the pleasure of the taste. The test involved two bottles of wine, one costing eleven dollars a bottle and the other costing just over a hundred dollars a bottle. They poured each wine into two glasses at different prices and put the four glasses in front of a tester with nothing more than a dollar per bottle label to distinguish which glass was which. The three test subjects that were filmed as part of the story chose the glass of wine with the most expensive price as the most enjoyable without fail. One test subject admitted that she was influenced by the price. Another test subject defended his choice because no two bottles of wine are the same, although I really couldn’t see where this was applicable considering that the some bottle at two separate prices resulted in two different flavors. The third test subject admitted his prejudice for the wine in the higher priced glass but also admitted that he didn’t appreciate being deceived.
The testers who developed the test that the article was based on were a lot more scientific in their study of what was happening inside the brain. A bevy of sensors were placed on test subjects heads and MRI scans were made while test subjects made their choice as to which wine was the better. The test results showed different areas of the brain were actually responding differently based on nothing but a difference in price. Fascinating stuff indeed. But while it became scientifically obvious that people can allow the price of a wine prejudice their appreciation of the wine’s flavor what other prejudices can be measured scientifically. Can the principals of this test be applied to measure the influence of racial prejudices against people?
It would be fascinating to see people’s prejudices measured scientifically on an MRI scan. The test can be conducted in such a fashion where the test subjects can be given a set of resume from a group of potential job applicants. The resumes can be developed in such a fashion where the job experiences listed can be quite similar but noticeably different. And then the test subjects can be given a photo of the applicants. It would be interesting to see which parts of the brain will manifest itself as the racist centers. It is my theory that people who are more than willing to subjugate people based on little more than racial stereotypes will exhibit a particular brain pattern or chemical reaction that would manifest.
And just think of all the benefits of being able to measure and document the racial prejudices of people. People who are willing to subjugate minorities could be identified and kept out of positions or occupations that would give them an opportunity to wield their prejudice. Administrators who ran institutions or companies that are unfairly overrepresented by a white population and underrepresented by minorities could be scientifically tested to see how much their racial prejudices influenced their enrollment or employment choices. Police officers who participate in the killing of minorities in a hail of bullets fueled by color arousal can be tested to see how much racial prejudices played a part in their decision to murder a black man for pulling out his wallet. People showing up for jury duty could actually be tested to see if they can actually be racially neutral enough to decide the fate of others. The possibilities would be endless.
Suddenly the best way to counter racism wouldn’t be to stop looking at racism but to actually identify the affects of these mental racial markers and use them to avoid having racist people subjugating others. We could even measure the racism of our judges who actually promote doing nothing in order to keep the status quo of white privilege from being challenged by people who truly want racial diversity. If we could actually determine what motivates people to be racially prejudice then we could take the next steps and actually develop medications and treatment that might help alleviate the need for people to subjugate others. Do you ever get that need to subjugate minorities? Take OpenMindium and kick the need to be a racist habit! Once the affects of racism can be measured scientist could probably discover that there are genetic markers that can determine who is going to be racist. The science of racism could actually end the affects of racism.
But unfortunately, the science of racism would require a commitment from everybody. Unfortunately, too many people not only condone racism but work to promote white privilege and black subjugation. Scientifically showing the influence of racism on people would require people to admit that racism is not just a fabrication, it is not a thing of our past, and that is a problem in our culture. You think the science of global warming is downplayed and minimized? Wait until the science of measuring the genetic racial markers is developed. Too many people are too ready to stick their heads in the sand and do whatever they can to keep things the way they are. People are more likely to be more concerned about why wine taste better when it is more expensive than to worry about why racism still exist in so many facets of American culture.