::Currently Under Construction::
Ask me anything
Humanism. Reason. Politics. The Universe. Etc.
My dad is so interesting to observe insofar as gaining insight to the level of cognitive dissonance inside a sound, intelligent, religious person’s head (he’s a Catholic Deacon).
For example, tonight he stated how religion that is inherently divisive is not a worthy religion.
The irony? All religion is inherently divisive.
To argue with a man who has renounced the use and authority of reason, and whose philosophy consists in holding humanity in contempt, is like administering medicine to the dead, or endeavoring to convert an atheist by scripture.
I have been wanting to make this post now for almost two weeks but I have been too busy to actually be able to sit down and write it.
So here it is….
A few weeks ago I was out at a bar for one of my friend’s birthdays. I met this girl who is friend’s with one of my other friends and during a conversation with her and two other males she asked us if we wanted to hear a riddle. We all agreed that we would like to hear it and it went like this:
A man and his son are driving home from a fishing trip when they get into a horrible accident. The father and son are both rushed to the hospital where the father has been pronounced dead on arrival. The son, in critical condition, is taken to an emergency operating room. When the doctor comes in to do the operation, they are flabbergasted as to who is lying on the table. “This is my son!” The doctor proclaims. Now the question is, who is the doctor?
So my 2 male friends and I sat there, confused, staring at this girl. She told us that the answer is very obvious and easy but even she was stumped the first time she heard it. The three of us sat there in deep contemplation, “Ok so the father died upon arrival to the hospital, right? sooo the doctor must be, a step father?” “Nope” “The dad who died was the step father and the doctor is the real father?” “Nope” “um…his biological father because the one who died was his adoptive father?” “Nope” and on and on and on we kept guessing. “ummmmm…..errrrmmmmm….ummmmm” we all keep saying in between all of us asking her “are you sure its obvious? are you sure this isn’t some kind of a trick?” She would nod and smile every time we asked and would say “nope, it’s really obvious.” So after a few minutes the three of us gave up and asked her to give us the answer. She looked at us and calmy and simply said two words. “The mom”. I got wide eyed and literally felt like the wind was being knocked out of me. I looked at her, eyes wide, mouth open and said “wow, that really says something horrible about our culture doesn’t it? We came up with all of these extravagant and complicated answers but it never dawned on us that the doctor in reference could possibly be a female” She smiled at me and the subject was quickly changed but I was unable to let that moment go.
I like to believe that I am very conscious and aware to the patriarchal society that we live in and even I couldn’t have come up with the possibility of the doctor being a woman. It speaks volumes to the poisonous, brain washed and conditioned society we live in. That no matter how conscious or aware of social injustice you are, you are still able to fall victim to the oh so carefully placed social norms/gender roles that society has done such a great job at drilling into our conscious and subconscious since birth.
Even now, 2 weeks later, I am still unable to let that moment go and I doubt I will be able to forget that moment for as long as I live.
Wow. Just wow. I have to admit I was stumped by this.
This riddle is an example which reveals to us the result of a phenomenon referred to as implicit bias, and Harvard has an ongoing study with some online self tests for it here.
Implicit bias posesa special challenge because it suggests the possibility that people are treating others differently even when they are unaware that they are doing so. In the case of this riddle, many of us failed to even once consider that the doctor was female (more importantly imo, that the doctor was not a male), although we remain completely unaware of said bias until the answer is revealed to us.