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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife is the front end receptionist at her company. A few days ago, she let a black man in through a side door. (He was a courier for a local company and wasn't wearing a uniform)

He passed by my wife's boss in a poorly lighted hallway.

Later (among other things), she told my wife "a black man came out of the darkness"

My wife who has lived in Boston, New York, Pittsburg and Phoenix couldn't help but laugh in her face. Not such a good idea, but thats another story.

The next day, the company announced tighter security procedures (that they never bothered to address before...even after 9/11)

Coincidence?
 

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Maybe and maybe not. Bias is a complicated thing and is slow to eradicate - and it's all over the place (even in Pittsburgh). There are places in this country which are still largely white, and I think that simply not knowing people of other races helps bias to linger. New England is pretty small, but it ranges from small small towns to very large cities and I don't think blanket statements about bias can be made that way.

Would the company have reacted the same way if she had said "A stranger came out of the darkness"? We don't know. So, it could be blatent bias, it could be more subconscious bias, and it could just be that someone woke up and realized that a non-employee who they could not identify was in the office and thought that maybe that should change.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Quote:
Originally Posted by cftwo View Post

Maybe and maybe not. Bias is a complicated thing and is slow to eradicate - and it's all over the place (even in Pittsburgh). There are places in this country which are still largely white, and I think that simply not knowing people of other races helps bias to linger. New England is pretty small, but it ranges from small small towns to very large cities and I don't think blanket statements about bias can be made that way.

Would the company have reacted the same way if she had said "A stranger came out of the darkness"? We don't know. So, it could be blatent bias, it could be more subconscious bias, and it could just be that someone woke up and realized that a non-employee who they could not identify was in the office and thought that maybe that should change.
Well, my wife said that the "out of the darkness" statement was said with a fearful voice. In this community of 14,700, the population of non-whites is about 2%. (Per the 2000 census) Blacks make up a fraction of that 2%.

I'm fairly certain that if the man had been white, the update to the security proceedures wouldn't have happened.
 
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