Extra credit for being black

Take a look at the illustration below:
Our initial impression is that square A is darker than square B.  This is because our brain recognizes a pattern and interprets what our eyes see accordingly.  As a matter of fact, square A and square B are the same shade.
Similarly, we are accustomed to blacks behaving a certain way.  Not that all blacks behave the same, but there are particular black flavors of the various personality types we encounter.  Over the years, our brains grow accustomed to this pattern and we expect it.  I am certain that leftists, in particular, internalize these patterns and adjust their judgments of black individuals accordingly.  If I encounter a black person (or a person of any other race) who is loud and obnoxious, I have no qualms about thinking this, or even saying it.  A leftist, on the other hand, will excuse such behavior since it is expected among blacks.  He will have no such tolerance for whites who behave similarly; his expectation of whites is higher – though he will never admit it.
I will freely admit that when I encounter blacks who act with humility, behave like ladies and gentlemen, dress conservatively and speak with respect, I think to myself “what a beautiful thing!”  because  their demeanor is in stark contrast to what I’ve learned to expect from so many others of their race.  It is refreshing.  And yet, because I have not excused the inferior behavior of other blacks, I do not hold the well-behaved ones to be superior to similarly behaved whites.  But leftists, having already accepted inferior black behavior as normal, expected and perfectly acceptable, will give those blacks extra credit.  In their minds, civilized blacks are superior to equivalent whites because they had to elevate themselves further from their base (default) behavior to reach their current level.
To be sure, if a leftist recognized the above psychological dynamics within himself, he would castigate himself for being racist.  He would sign up for sensitivity training because he would realize that the root of his adoration of civilized blacks lies in his lower expectations of them to begin with.
In his mannerisms, oratory skills and overall intelligence, Barack Obama is no better than many white politicians.  But since he is (half) black, leftists subconsciously expected less of him.  It is as if they were saying, “this guy is really smart for a black.  We should elect him!”
Blacks also receive extra credit in grading.   Steven Farron in The Affirmative Action Hoax (pg 127) writes:

Even without conscious intention, Blacks receive much higher grades than Whites for the same work.  Kent Harber (1998) wrote a large number of essays that he filled with errors in grammar and content.  He then asked ninety-two  White college students to act as markers and gave one essay to each, along with a brief description of the putative author, which indicated the “author’s” race indirectly but clearly (e.g., member of the Black Student Union).  The markers’ average rating (on a one to seven scale) for content of the essays they thought were written by Blacks was 3.5, but 2.7 for the essays they thought were written by Whites…

The converse may also be true.  Since we expect less of blacks, their crimes are not punished as harshly as if they were committed by whites.  Just as square A seems darker than square B, because it is in an overall lighter area, so too do the crimes of whites seem more heinous than those of blacks.  The MSM sometimes plays into this mentality with statements such as “in this quiet trusting community, nobody could have suspected that a monster lurked in their midst”.  We probably would not read such a statement if the crime had occurred in the South side of Chicago.
We are hardwired to perceive things in terms of contrast and in terms of patterns.  This is not our own doing; it is embedded in our nature.  It is a part of nature that is in us.  While we have the power to appreciate that squares A and B are the same shade of gray, we also have the power to appreciate why we see them differently.  I think there is room to celebrate both aspects of our humanity.

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15 Responses to Extra credit for being black

  1. Bay Area Guy says:

    Hey JAY, though this isn’t directly related to the post, since we’re talking about race and education, I was wondering if you could possibly post or provide a link to an article by Raymond Wolters on the disastrous legacy of Brown v. Board of Education.
    That article by Kurtagic was excellent. An article by Wolters, and you would be on a roll. 🙂

  2. Californian says:

    The converse may also be true. Since we expect less of blacks, their crimes are not punished as harshly as if they were committed by whites.
    Guy White has made the point that given the high volume of crime in black inner city neighborhoods, charges are frequently plea bargained down in order to process the volume of cases. Drug dealing might become possession, and so forth. And other crimes are ignored as there is not the manpower to deal with them.
    This is contrary to the perception on the left that blacks are given higher sentences for the same crimes as White people.
    This all bears further examination.

  3. Valkea says:

    It might rather be that the letter A is the same shade as letter B.
    Good to see you started your own blog.

    • jewamongyou says:

      I think the letters A and B are too small to tell, but the squares certainly are the same shade. If you block out, with paper, all the surrounding squares except for those two, you’ll see this.
      Thanks for joining us Valkea!

  4. Sam Budee says:

    I’m not 100% sure about this, but I think that what you’re talking about here is very similar if not identical to Charpentier’s illusion.

  5. Valkea says:

    Ok, I punched a hole to a paper and checked. It still seems that A square is darker than B.
    But I don’t want to press this further, I am just glad you started to put your thoughts to a blog. I have seen many good and thoughtful comments from you in Amren.

  6. HelenChicago says:

    I sampled the colors of the two squares in PhotoShop and they are very nearly identical. In hex, one is 6b6b6b and the other is 696969. To the naked eye, with the rest of the illustration removed, they’re indistinguishable.

    • A Finnish Reader says:

      In my Photoshop CS2 they are both 6b6b6b. I used the Marquee Tool & Average Blur to get rid of the minor jpg distortions before taking color sample.
      This illusion really makes one wonder can we trust even in what we see with our own eyes (obviously not) and what this means in life generally.
      (The points in the writing itself are sharp and true, as usual).

  7. Pingback: How whites patronise and make allowances for Blacks « South Africa Sucks

  8. Emperor Bok-assa says:

    Excellent and thoughtful article that dovetails with my own thoughts about blacks.
    It also explains the absurd level of adulation heaped on Mandela by white liberals who desperately wanted to find a “good black” to lead South Africa into the fantasy of the “Rainbow Nation”. I call it the Brain?No! Nation.
    I have taken the liberty of posting your article on South Africa Sucks (I’m sure you know where to find it) together with a few pertinent comments of my own.

  9. Eugenicist says:

    Excellent read. Summarizes some of my feelings quite well. Thank you.

  10. Kiwiguy says:

    I thought the same thing during the Obama campaign, but this is one of the best articles I’ve seen describing this phenomenon.

  11. Pingback: Donald Trump: America’s third black president | Jewamongyou's Blog

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