The Blue-eyed, Brown-Eyed Bully Experiment, 1970's
Anti-Bullying - Central
How to Be a Bully
I remember experiments that were conducted in the 1970s, on school classrooms of children. Although all of the participants knew it was an experiment, the effect on the children was so powerful, that some came near or committed suicide.
Day One: The teacher would say, "all of the brown eyed people are evil, they are corrupt, they can't be trusted, and no one wants anything to do with them. If you are friends with them, you are just like them"
It did not take long before the brown-eyed students, some who were top students and well- liked, began to suffer. They did worse in their course work. They were less likely to participate in classroom discussions, and toward the end of the experiment, they did their best to stay hidden. The self-confidence of the targeted, "brown-eyed" group plummeted to alarming lows.
Day Two - The teacher changes the target group, to the blue-eyed students. Immediately, the brown-eyed students became aggressive in their dislike of the blue-eyed students. The blue-eyed students suffer as much as, if not more than, the brown-eyed students from the day before.
EVERYONE knew this was an experiment, but what sociologists term as the "risks" associated with being the "out" crowd are so powerful in our modern society, that humans will fill like water, the side that is the "in", or popular societal group.
This is a perfect example of how easily the crowd can be swayed into bullying a person or group for ignorant, or unreal reasons. This shows how easy it is, or popular to become the Bully. It beats being the Bullied.
During this era, other experiments were conducted, where all but one person was privy to the information that an experiment would be done. A group of 20 people, 1, being unaware of the group dynamic, would be told by a facilitator, "the sky is green". The 19 would heartily agree that, "yes, the sky is green". At first the 1 may say, "No, the sky is Blue", but in a very short span of time, the lone Individual, would quickly agree, "Yes, the sky is green"
I believe this is what the homeless, the mentally ill, addicts and the "wrong skin-color" face in our society everyday! I think it is possible they are bullied by peers, teachers, parents, ministers, siblings and/or employers. People who in society, have standing, or crowd authority over others, use their authority to determine a lack of value in these certain groups of people or individuals. Keep in mind, this kind of bullying can change focus in an instant. Just like the Brown-eyed/Blue-eyed switch.
Bullying is a Full-Time Career For Some
- Bullied: A Student, a School and a Case That Made History | Teaching Tolerance
- Hate Map | Southern Poverty Law Center
The Southern Poverty Law Center was founded in 1971 as a small civil rights law firm. Today, the Center is internationally known for its tolerance education programs, its legal victories against white supremacists and its tracking of hate groups.
- ‘Bullied’ Offers Lessons for Students, Educators | Southern Poverty Law Center
In response to mounting reports of vicious anti-gay bullying and student suicides, the Southern Poverty Law Center’s Teaching Tolerance project is making a new documentary film and educational kit available – free of charge – to every school in the c
How To Beat A Bully - Movie Trailer
Bully or Be Bullied?
I know that here in the Southern U.S., poor whites are the least represented group of any. They are chided and made fun of; "the people of Walmart" is a good example. These poor whites are a punchline and big joke. They are looked down on, from every segment of our society. My family falls into this category, so we have lived with it for as long as I can remember.
In the past year, the activities of radical right-wing politics have swept up the poor whites, giving these picked on, or bullied group, someone else to pick on.
The radical right-wing politicians consider poor whites as dog poo on their shoes, but they understand societal and crowd politics, and are using the demographic of crowds,or "risk", to push their agenda.
When they are through, the demarcation line will once more be drawn between Poor whites, and the GOP.
There is a growing trend of racism toward Hispanic people in the South, South West, and Western U.S. 97% of Hispanics in the Northern Americas are born in the U.S.
If we want to talk about who was here first. Indigenous Tribes were here before Europeans, and many cities and towns in the Southwest and West were founded by the first Spaniards, Spanish Americans, Mexicans and Hispanics.
This big push and trend, makes it popular to look at every person with brown or red skin with disgust, and demand they be treated like criminals, or be given less dignity than animals.
This is bullying on a National level.
Easy Victims For Bullies; The Homeless, Mentally Ill, and Addicts
The homeless, the mentally ill, the alcoholic, and drug addict are part of the "risk" category that no one wants to be associated with. Although many street persons can boast of pasts, filled with condos, airplanes and world travel, the ground level at homelessness is very even ground. It doesn't matter, "what you were", it matters what you look like now. It matters what your "station" in life is today.
For those who have not yet experienced a cold night on a grey sidewalk, stained with piss, gum and blood, it is easy for them to look down from their lofty place and declare, "if they wanted to work..., if they wanted to stop..., if they wanted to get off the streets, all they have to do is get up and pull themselves up by their bootstraps, anyone can do it."
If an individual has been deemed, the "brown-eyed" kid in our society, for their survival, they will become invisible. Because the crowd bullying is too much to bear on top of being so far down.
Bullying a Homeless Man Experiment - by Vikarworld - Speaks Volumes Watch to the End
A 'Dirty Bum' Can End Up The Refuse of Bullies
Consider that dirty bum sleeping on your bus stop bench. At one time, he knew and proclaimed, "The sky is Blue", but his employer, and the Corporation he worked for Demanded he call the sky green. As is the way of the Bully, if he was not fast or convincing enough, he was pushed out, and down. He could not get unemployment, he lost his home, retirement and family.
Perhaps that disgusting person you see with only a backpack and a brown paper bag, just needed a little help, until they could get back on their feet. Instead, he got a social worker, whose ex-husband looks just like Sammy. He needed a little help to keep from losing it all, her instant dislike of Sammy sends him into the famous "crack" that thousands fall into every month..
Could it be that person laying in the gutter, paid all of her fines on a traffic ticket, but the Court Clerk, receiving cash payments, was a thief, and stole the money? Since the money was stolen, it looks like gutter-girl didn't pay her simple traffic fines. A warrant is issued for the arrest of that gutter tramp. She keeps saying, "I paid all of my fines", she loses her job, then her home, and her respect of the system. If she did not hold onto all of her receipts, or the theif, the person in a Position of TRUST didn't ever issue her one. Gloria-gutter-tramp is then arrested for something they did not do. Then begins her criminal history. No one is going to believe her over a Court Employee. (This happened to me. Luckily I had kept the receipt from 2 years previous )
Finally, the Court Clerk gets caught, loses her job and may actually spend a day in jail and be required to pay restitution, but no justice is given to those who were real victims of her crime . This happens all the time. Whole lives are ruined by people in a position of trust who proclaim, "You are brown-eyed and we all know you never tell the truth", so the honest brown-eyed individual takes hit after hit, until they are so low, the only place of solace is the bottom of a bottle, or the occasional feeling of acceptance of the drug that makes you feel alive again.
The next time you notice a person in dire straits, consider your next action and attitude. Are you going to join the popular crowd and show your disgust and disdain? Or, will you go ahead and show some compassion. Don't do anything, but give the person a smile, a prayer or a bite to eat. If you give them change, don't worry if they are going to buy booze with it. Can they buy a full meal and prepare it on your $1.25 in change? No, but they can get a bottle or can of grain distilled into alcohol, that will give them some calories to live on until the next couple of dollars comes along.
Once a person has been kicked or fallen that far down, it will take a compassionate hand reaching down, to help their brother or sister up. We are all humans.We are all made of the same minerals and dust. If you believe in Creation, then you must know we are all literally brothers and sisters. If you go with survival of the fittest, then you are saving yourself by saving your fellow man or woman.
We know "how to be a bully", just maybe we can be activist in Stopping bullying! Thanks
Risk - Acting Outside of the Crowd
- Social psychology - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
- The Walking Behaviour of Pedestrian Social Groups and Its Impact on Crowd Dynamics
- The principles of collective animal behaviour. - PubMed - NCBI
Philos Trans R Soc Lond B Biol Sci. 2006 Jan 29;361(1465):5-22. Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Review
August 19, 2010 Updated December 30, 2014
© 2010 Lori J Latimer