Choices that Change the World

“Everyone is a prisoner of his own experiences. No one can eliminate prejudices–just recognize them. –Edward R. Murrow (Source: A blogger I have a lot of respect for. I disagree with this quote so am choosing not to mention where I saw it. I support this blogger and don’t want to diminish his blog–which I like a lot–in any way.)

I no longer believe that quote to be true. Prejudice is gradually being eliminated a little more every day. Certainly not in everyone. But when one considers that when even just one person who had chosen prejudice and hate begins to choose love, acceptance, friendship and compassion instead, from that point forward their children and children’s children are very likely to follow their example. When I multiply that by the number of people who are becoming less hateful and more loving every day, it gives to me great hope for humankind and our planet. It isn’t happening overnight, but it is happening.

Russ

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About russtowne

My wife and I have been married since 1979. We have 3 adult children and 4 young grandsons. I manage a wealth management firm I founded in 2003. My Beloved is a Special Education teacher for Kindergartners and First Graders. I'm a published author of 23 books in a variety of genres for grownups and children. In addition to my family, friends, investing, and writing, my passions include reading, watching classic movies, experiencing waves crashing on rocky shores, hiking in ancient redwood forests, and enjoying our small redwood grove and fern garden.
This entry was posted in Choices, Compassion, Connection/Connecting, Hope, Making the World a Better Place, Observations, Random Thoughts and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Choices that Change the World

  1. mimijk says:

    I identify prejudice with ignorance first and foremost. So I guess I would add that when an individual chooses to learn about others, seeks to understand their customs and traditions, then respect can flourish and acceptance of all people prevail.

    • russtowne says:

      I agree. The prejudice of many bigots eventually erodes when they are faced with example after example of wonderful human beings who happen to be of another race, creed, faith, tradition, etc. Sadly, some bigots will never learn, and every race, creed, faith, and tradition have their bad seeds which are held up as examples of how awful the whole group is. It’s a game of attrition, and I believe bigotry is gradually losing ground.

  2. willowdot21 says:

    Maybe there is hope for the world yet!?

  3. Yeah what can I say, other then I have faults………..but try not to judge others…………because I have faults……..

  4. kmabarrett says:

    Hi Russ,
    Within the context of racial or ethnic prejudice, I would whole-heartily agree with you – the world does seem to moving in a “better” direction. (At least I want to believe so.) In the broader context of prejudice based on personal experience, I’m not so sure.

    If you get heaving drunk on beer the first time out, you’re less likely to mix beer and cheap wine the next weekend. Experience has “taught” you that “more” may be “worse”.

    If you see extreme opulence/wealth and destitute poverty, you are less likely to believe in the “fairness” of life. Is God fair? What sin did the man born blind commit (or was it his parents sin)?

    You have become a “prisoner” of your experience (you believe you can predict the results based on the givens) – when you begin to make decisions (or formulate opinions) without gathering sufficient facts. The problem is, of course, that one can never be certain one has gathered “sufficient” facts, so we “accept” a preponderance of evidence (experience) and form our opinion (prejudice).

    The cautionary note behind the posting is we should always remember: The act of measuring alters both the object being measured and the person doing the measuring.

    • russtowne says:

      Excellent points, Keith. I especially liked your last paragraph. In my post I wasn’t reacting to the first sentence in the quote, but rather to the five words “No one can eliminate prejudices”. I believe one can. I believe that billions can, over time. Not all prejudices. And not all people. But some prejudices, and some people. And because of that, I disagree with “No one can eliminate prejudices”. But I could be prejudiced. ;-D!

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