Nonverbal communication on Stereotype
From the video, it is clear that the Sikhs get stereotyped for their physical appearance. The Sikhs who are known to have turbans and with full beards are in most cases thought to be criminals or terrorists. The belief comes from their close resemblance to Muslims. People within the communities in the U.S. are known to be stereotypic against the Muslim community, especially after the terror attacks carried out by terrorists who were Muslims. However, this does not mean that all Muslims are terrorists. It is in the same angle that Sikhs in turban are viewed as criminals. The video seeks to offer reassurance that the turban worn by Sikhs is a symbol of love. This can be asserted in a study on mood effect that provided evidence that traditional Muslim headgear activated negative stereotypes and contributed to aggressive responses in the shooter paradigm (Unkelbach, Schneider, Gode, & Senft, 2010).
It is clear that the man in the video held stereotypes based on physical appearance. He was clearly astonished that the lady spoke perfect English despite her appearance placing her as a possible immigrant. It is important for this man to learn the art of cross-cultural communication. This implies that he should avoid having a personal bias in communication and stereotypic and cultural assumptions about other people based on their appearance. A resource that I would suggest is a resource guide on understanding bias by Community Relations Services, a peacemaker agency within the U.S. Justice Department. This resource will be essential in enlightening the man on the difference between bias and cultural competency. While the resource tool targets police-community relationships, it has important lessons on how to achieve diversity. A key strategy that they can use to learn to deal with their stereotypic nature is to practice individuation. This refers to the process of considering a person as an individual instead of making biased inferences about the individual’s members of a group (Community Relations Service, 2012).
Community Relations Service. (2012). Understanding Bias: A Resource Guide. Retrieved from https://www.justice.gov/crs/file/836431/download Unkelbach, C., Schneider, H., Gode, K., & Senft, M. (2010). A turban effect, too: Selection biases against women wearing Muslim headscarves. Social Psychological and Personality Science, 1(4), 378-383.
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