I've begun to collectively realize that as human beings we all possess a certain level of prejudice which we may not even realize at times even exists. Of course there are the obvious ones about race and skin color, but let's not forget religion, both of which wars have been fought over.
Sometimes we inadvertently " out" ourselves with out realizing when we make generalizations regarding certain groups of people. The economically challenged are often part of a disenfranchised group with no voice or power in our society. I'm talking about poor people. They get no respect as Rodney Dangerfield would say. Most of us just treat them like they are invisible.
Developmentally disabled people used to be locked away in asylums, treated like defectives, until Geraldo Rivera published Willowbrook and exposed the way the severely mentally retarded and physically disabled individuals were being treated.
I've heard comments directed at fat people that they should just stop eating or somehow they are just "weak".
I've heard people stereotype Asians and the way they make jokes about their driving abilities.
I've heard people refer to individuals with mental health issues being "crazy". I believe this has more to do with ignorance and fear.
I'm commenting about this right now because I just spent the last five days with my family and close friends and realized how sensitive I have grown about the way people refer to other groups of individuals in such negative ways and I don't even think they are aware sometimes of how they sound. Let me further say that I rail against political correctness so there is a certain level of dissonance I experience regarding the whole thing but have concluded that people's ignorance can sometimes lead them down the wrong path of generalizing.
Are you really aware of what your own prejudices might be?