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Relieving Social Disharmony – ‘Judge and police the symptoms’ or alleviate the real root causes?

As many people have recently been reminded, Martin Luther King made his “I have a dream..” speech in August 1963, more than half a century ago. Recent events have drawn into sharp focus that we are probably just as far away from that dream of relieving social disharmony now as we were when he originally made his speech. In the intervening period there have been a range of attempts to resolve racial tension – is anyone suggesting that we have achieved a satisfactory outcome?  

Where there’s a will…is there a way?

You may be familiar with the expression “Where there’s a will, there’s a way”. The starkness of recent racial killings has built ‘the will’ to create a better future. But as previous efforts to change the status quo have failed to alleviate our social disharmony, is it reasonable to ask at the moment do we actually have ‘the way’? 

Does ‘treating the symptoms’ relieve social disharmony?

Let’s look at it from another perspective – if a person was being poisoned would you assume that treating the symptoms of the poisoning would cause the person to recover?

For most people even entertaining the idea you can treat the symptom and still alleviate the cause seems ludicrous. But perhaps due to lack of psychological awareness that’s exactly what’s happening in our worthwhile efforts to resolve racial discrimination.

Taking action

As a systemic thinker, I’ve been compelled to take action on some of the counter-intuitive psychological phenomena which are real underlying causes of the discrimination which is poisoning our society. The prognosis for a harmonised society is low unless we can account for these deep-seated psychological drivers.    

In the same way that we cannot expect the recovery of a person who has been physically poisoned, we will not resolve our social poisoning unless we alleviate the root causes of racism which originates in our minds. Would you be interested in some practical action all of us can take to be a positive contributor to alleviating discriminatory problems?

To demonstrate new ways of how you can contribute to a more harmonious and functional society, we often run a free webinar Enhancing Inclusion and Diversity. Head to our Events page for upcoming dates or register to be the first to hear about the next webinar. 

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