There’s a fact about humans—no matter how conscientious you are, you will always have a social bias. This fact has been repeated often (even in an interview coming up on this site). But It’s one thing to know this fact and do nothing and another to know it and act on curtailing that impulse to perceive bias. It’s also another thing to not even know you have bias. That’s where Active Voices comes in.
Active Voices is a national organization that, as their website states, “combines arts, culture, and media with action to shift racial narratives and build public will for structural change.” To quote the mission statement:
Our mission is to build the capacity of grassroots organizers to harness the transformational power of public narrative to create new cultural meanings, expand political imagination and create a more favorable environment for their campaigns.
One of their latest campaigns, Check Your Bias, aims to challenge Americans to confirm their biases and deal with them on very real terms. #CheckYourBias cites how many white Americans felt that the recent string of police shootings were isolated events instead of the rash of racial bias-laden crimes they actually were.
As the campaign’s site states, Check Your Bias aims to “[challenge] people to examine their own biases and to learn how their biases hurt others; [stop] mainstream media from perpetuating racially biased images of people of color, [and encourage] people of color to tell their own stories and create their own media to challenge stereotypical mainstream narratives.
If you want to get started with checking your bias, take the campaign’s pledge. You can also take an implicit bias test, post your own thoughts, and encourage others to work on their bias. You can also take the conversation to Twitter with the hashtag #CheckYourBias.
I’m excited for this campaign; I truly think it’ll do a lot of good for those really wanting to become better neighbors, friends, spouses, teachers, co-workers and bosses. Basically, this will help any and everyone in America who is always striving to become a better person.