The Perception Of Human Attitudes And Values

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From this class I learned that the circumstances that you are born into and raised in help shape who you become. Our attitudes and values are shaped early on by those who around us most frequently and hold positions of power in our estimation. As children we both listen and observe the adults around us. Without realizing it, we often take on their points of view until we are challenged. Moreover, few people realize that their deeply held beliefs actually exist because of someone else. Most people are not challenged on their beliefs and values, instead we tend to congregate with other people who share and reinforce our values. When we are challenged and even presented with empirical facts that run counter to our beliefs we are hesitant to change our minds. This is called belief perseverance. Humans use inductive reasoning to support their cognitive bias. Most humans do this. It is hard to simply let of an ingrained notion and take a counter stance. Since facts and information to the contrary does not work effectively to change people’s minds, the only option is repeated exposure and experience with the irrefutable facts. An example would be someone being raised to believe that all homosexual men are also violent pedophiles, despite not knowing any homosexual men in real life. Simply telling them that this is not the case is not likely to change their minds, but repeated positive experiences with a friendly gay neighbor who is a parent, a doctor, a church goer and never
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