While it may not have the immediate newsworthiness of the BP oil leak, the Arizona illegal immigration bill or continue fallout from Wall Street, the issue of race has received excellent coverage from CNN over the past three years. It all started with “Black in America,” a program that had no singular focus, but rather took a survey of what it means to be black in America in 2008.
The latest CNN project aired last night on AC360. It was called “Black or White: Kids on race.” There was one poignant moment when a white 5-year-old girl took part in a pilot test that left her mother in tears:
This immediately called to mind a section from Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Blink, where elementary school students took an Implicit Association Test (IAT) that offered similarly disheartening results. Gladwell explained the test in 2007 on Oprah:
I’m no expert on matters regarding race. If I take a stance here, it’s to say the status quo isn’t working. I will say this is why I believe in diversity and I think it’s increasingly important for kids at younger ages to interact with kids who don’t look and act like themselves.
This is a touchy matter, I realize. I think I’d rather leave further discussion to the comment board:
- Why do you think these negative associations originate at such a young age?
- What kind of discussions should results from these findings?
- What can be done for children to impact attitudes regarding race?