Children and families need to be the number one priority in our society. Currently, we only pay lip service to such things. Our children are our future. Isn't it time that we reflect on our true values as a society?
Just as Phil Zimbardo talks about the slippery slope of evil that begins with the subject mindlessly taking the first step toward aggression through a seemingly minor action, when mobbing begins, workers are not initially encouraged to be cruel to the targeted worker.
Can American policy makers and politicians take for granted that they are ruling a nation of Homer Simpsons who can be duped into war by the very same trick that we just fell for ten years ago? Our leaders are being extra-careful not to say "WMD"s, but surely Bart and Lisa can connect the dots.
Scientists and clinicians are interested in the dynamic interaction of perception and aggression. Looking for trouble, and seeing it, may be a deep cognitive bias--a negativity bias--that distorts normal emotional processing.
In the short number of days since the Karen Klein story broke, several of the 13-year-old boys involved have received death threats. Why is it so much easier to see these kids as inhumane monsters than it is to see them as children who are in need of serious help?
It's one of the perils of theorizing about sex differences: Our own expectations and intuitions get in the way. We hear about a study that reveals a significant sex gap and we immediately jump to conclusions.
No parent enjoys seeing their child come home with a bruise, scratch or tooth marks. If this were happening between second graders, my reaction would be much different than when it happens between 3-year-olds.
What are the implications for parents? For me, it is promoting the life skill of perspective taking in everyday situations with our kids. Whether we are talking, watching television or a movie, or reading books.
I now realize now that it is the overall way I responded to aggression that has mattered in my children's lives. Given the stress that our children face in today's world, this is an essential life skill.