ARE WE REALLY HUMANE?
The following excerpt is from the self help
psychology book, Be Your Own Therapist.
Most of us consider ourselves and our own groups to be humane
and to evidence the highest qualities of humanity. Is this
really so? A shocking psychology experiment casts serious
doubts. Take average citizens and ask them to "teach" one of their fellow citizens nonsense words in a
psychology experiment. Then give them directions to electrically
shock the "learner" (who is out of sight and in truth an
actor-accomplice of the experimenter who never gets shocked)
whenever the "learner" makes a mistake. The experimenter,
dressed in a white lab coat, encourages the "teacher" to keep
increasing the amount of electric shock to "teach them better."
The actor-accomplice, out of sight but wired for sound, starts
responding to the pretend electric shocks with small yelps, soon
gives out cries of severe pain and when the most severe shock is
supposedly given, is silent. Most "teachers" evidenced
significant distress during the experiment. Nevertheless, a
majority of them followed the directions of the man in the lab
coat to the very end, believing they were giving out severe
electric shocks for failure to learn nonsense words. These
"teachers" were average citizens, not criminals, not severely
Scary? Yes. Enlightening too, for the real lesson here is how
out-of-touch with our humanity most of us can be without knowing
it. Most of us can be vicious and cruel.
|Authoritarian messages are crucial if we are to change society's violent trends. Such trends start with authoritarian messages given by parents to their children.
Treatment for loss or lack of humanity doesn't necessarily make
it happen. There have been thousands of adopting parents who
have discovered that "love does not conquer all." False caring,
unfelt empathy and phony sympathy abound among cruel children
and career criminals, for they try to please parents and parole
boards with their professed humanity. The attempt to make these
groups become humane is often the goal of jails, punishments,
parenting and therapy. Such attempts are often failures. These
failures can point us in the direction of more effective
approaches, approaches which are necessary for many children
More Excerpts This Chapter
ARE 97% OF FAMILIES NEUROTIC?
TRAUMATIZING CHILDREN - 97% OF THEM?
ARE WE REALLY HUMANE?
OUR CURRENT FAMILIES BRING OUT OUR SKEWNESS
MOTHERS CAN BE SEXIST TOO
MANY MEN STILL ABDICATE THEIR PARENTING ROLES
WORKING MOMS - ARE THEIR KIDS OK?
LATCHKEY CHILDREN DON'T DO AS WELL
THE SEARCH FOR APPROVAL
This Chapter's Quiz
Book Table of Contents
Sexual Education Psychology
Self Help Free Read - Book Online
ARE WE REALLY HUMANE? © 1995-99