Project Implicit

Would you be willing to take a subconscious test on prejudices?

Hey, it’s a snow day … and there’s nothing better to do! You can self-test your unconscious levels of prejudice about age, gender, race, etc.

A few weeks ago, the Washington Post published an article on Project Implicit, “See No Bias” by Shankar Vedantam.

The WP sub-headline wrote, “Many Americans believe they are not prejudiced. Now a new test provides powerful evidence that a majority of us really are. Assuming we accept the results, what can we do about it?”

To view the entire article, go to

Read more about the project, visit:

Ironically, the study is based at Harvard University. The president of Harvard University, Dr. Lawrence H. Summers, recently made controversial closed-door remarks about the shortage of women in the sciences and engineering started a campaign against the gender science bias.

Many politicians and elected officials claim they are not prejudiced, especially members of the Democratic Party who champion diversity issues and social engineering legislation. So the Blue Dog double-dared a well-known gay attorney and a number of Democratic activist to take the bias test, but most declined.

I’m not surprised either. Democratic liberalism is dead and has been replaced with the self-centered advocacy of the special interests. In the Commonwealth, the DPVA is a functional ambivalent entity.

But is the gender-based test nothing more than token junk science?

Personally, I thought the test was highly inaccurate, but humorous and fun. After all, I am what I am. And I’ve played this political correct game before …

In the early 1970s, I attended the first open space, self-progressing high school on the East coast. I never dealt with HS guidance counselors — and instead of Home room, I attended “Who am I” sessions where ‘we’ students daily explored our inter-feelings. The class hugged a lot, held hands, sat in a circle, etc. The school attracted an eclectic crowd of liberal educators along with a diverse student enrollment. It’s was vastly different from a tradition high school.

In hindsight, I consider myself a Junius-thinking political byproduct of a failed 1970s left-wing social experiment for a pre-utopian society (A.K.A. the political correct global village).

For the record: That’s why I’m a Blue Dog.

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  1. Barnie Day Avatar
    Barnie Day

    ‘Prejudice’ is an interesting word, almost one directional. An opinion formed without examination or familarity of or with the facts can only be ‘prejudice’ if the opinion formed is negative. I don’t know what a positive opinion formed without examination of or familarity with the facts is called, but it is not prejudical–yet it intuitively seems to me that it should be as well. I’ve heard people say they are ‘prejudiced’ for something or someone, in a postive sense. But that violates the definition of the word. In fact, it is just the opposite of it. Opposite words can get tricky. For example, if someone asks, ‘What is the opposite of ‘love’the immediate, intuitive jump for most folks I asked the question of is ‘hate.’ But that’s not so. From an emotional perspective, the opposite of love, I believe, would be closer to ‘indifference’ than anything. I didn’t take the quiz–prejudiced against quizzes!

  2. Jim Bacon Avatar
    Jim Bacon

    Verrrry interesting. I took one of these online “implicit association tests” that supposedly reveals a preference for “old” versus “young” people. I guess I’m showing my age (52)… I’d always considered myself unbiased, neutral, or, if anything, mildly biased towards youth and vigor. This test reported: “Your data suggest a moderate automatic preference for Old relative to Young.”

    Now that I know I’m not prejudiced against old people, maybe I’ll have the guts to test my sub-conscious attitudes towards enthnic and religious minorities.

  3. Steven Avatar

    Barnie — Hmm, curious response to the word, prejudice.

    Would it help if I said the test was also sponsored by the University of Virginia? It’s your state tax dollars at work. The test present an opportunity to assess your conscious and unconscious preferences for over 60 different topics ranging from pets to political issues.

    If privacy is a concern, the test is done on a secure line for privacy and the information cannot be shared. In hindsight, I probably should have not used such a strong word as prejudice.

    FYI: On two Project Implicit test concerning people of color and gays & lesbians.

    8 out of 10 Democrat friends refused to take the test. The two Dems that took the test, traded responses with me (but with a phone call only). Both were scored to favor whites over people of color and one preferred straights over gays & lesbians, the other made no distinction with sexual orientation.

    One Democrat activist/attorney who refused to take the test said, “I don’t have to take a Harvard test to know that I have become completely biased in certain directions as a result of my own experiences, whether they match or differ from the norm.”

    On the other hand, 9 out of 10 Republican friends eagerly took the test and proudly shared their results with me. Six of the nine GOP members made no distinction between whites and people of color, but eight out of nine preferred straights over gays & lesbians.

    One Republican, who is an elected official, said, “It’s no wonder the Democratic Black Caucus is talking with the GOP majority in the House. The Democrats have sold them out.”

    My, my, my … Did I lite a fuse?

    And Jim — You’re as old as you feel.

  4. Barnie Day Avatar
    Barnie Day

    You want ‘provacative?’ How about this: You can sell something only if it is ‘for sale.’

  5. Steven Avatar

    “most people sell their souls, and live with a good conscience on the proceeds” — Logan Pearsall Smith

    Isn’t that the DPVA slogan of the day?

    Take the test … and look inside the soul.

  6. Jim Bacon Avatar
    Jim Bacon

    OK, folks, I have just taken the “black-white” Implicit Association Test. I am proud to report this result: “Your data suggest little or no automatic preference for White American relative to African American.” Not bad for a conservative, middle-aged white guy.

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