Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Practicing Awareness of Microaggressions

I chose this picture because it speaks volumes to the psychological affects of microaggression.  This young person has the appearance of hurt and defeat; feelings people experience after an encounter with the ugly face of microagression.

It is ironic that this week’s entry deals with discussing a micro aggression I have detected.  Yesterday,  while on a trip to the store with some of my colleagues, the driver of the van made some statements that were very condescending toward a passenger in the van.  There was a woman that brought her husband and son with her to a conference and was told that there would be a fee per day for them to eat since they were not on the roster. While some of his points were correct, he expressed these ideas in a discourteous manner.  He could have definitively handled the situation with more class, allowing himself and the offended party to exit the disagreement without feeling dis empowered. The scenario is appropriate to our discourse because the man was of the "dominant" culture and the family was of Middle Eastern descent and their son had severe challenges.
As I watched the events unfold, I felt embarrassed for the individual and also disappointed in the person delivering the harsh words.  It reminded me of Dr. Wing Sue when he spoke about insulting messages and how this “often cause severe psychological stress and harm.” (Walden, 2011).  This experience definitely made me realize that, with all the best intention, if you do not speak kindly to others and choose the words you convey, the other person can be negatively affected in the end. I also realized that, while many in society want to deny or ignore it, racism, discrimination, prejudice and/or stereotypes are still very much alive and active.


  1. Kali,
    Great Post!!!!!!! When you objectify yourself as a standard you place yourself into the order of consequences and circumstances. I feel that one should treat an individual the way they wants to be treated. We are and we should do well onto others regardless of how they do onto us because we are happy with all that God gives us and we are thankful that we are better enlightened if we focus on all that we're thankful for onto others and ourselves to be a better person.

  2. Kali,
    Nice post! I am surprised at the way people think they have the right to speak to others. I gave an example in one of my papers of a physician rudely telling a patient "No wonder your knees hurt. They are carrying 100 pounds more than they are meant to." It is true that excess weight taxes our joints, but he could have explained it in a kinder, more professional manner. Physicians often think of themselves as above the rest of us. Some use their power inappropriately.

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  4. Kali,

    What a great post! You gave us a wonderful example of microaggessions this week. I really took to heart the picture that you posted. I do believe that pictures can say a thousand words, and I feel that your photo really captured the meaning of microaggessions. This picture should really make all of us reflect on what we say before we say it.

  5. Thank you ladies!

    I really appreciate the responses. I love this portion of the coursework because it gives us an opportunity to be creative and informal, thereby resulting in a shared understanding of each topic. I look forward to seeing yours as well!

  6. Hi Kali,
    Your picture makes an explicit statement regarding the hurt, you felt for this family. We must be conscious of our words. Word can be so hurtful and there is no eraser attached to them to remove the pain.

  7. Kali,
    When statements are made outwardly where others can here them I can see how it could be very hurtful to those that are receiving the message and yes the driver could have been a little more tactful in his discourse to the family. Because we now have an understanding of how the incidences can impact not only young children but adults as well you feel a since of urgency to educate others on using their words carefully. And also to educate them on how what they say can negatively or positively scar someone for life.

  8. Kali,what an awsome post this week. I agree with you the driver should have found a better way to handle that situation and I would have been embarrased also. Thanks for sharing that.