Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Pride Goeth Before A Fall

A while back on my MySpace blog, I posted this rant on why I've always viewed ethnic pride with suspicion, to put it mildly.

Well, it seems some studies bear my suspicions out, though through a different tangent than the one I had chosen to focus on in that post.

I scoped this article out on the LiveScience.com feed today. In it, the author talks about a study which links group pride with insecurity. Imagine that.

"The new study reveals how two types of pride are related to a person's good feelings about one social group or another to which they belong. These good feelings could come from being a Los Angeles Lakers fan (when they win), a war veteran, a member of a particular ethnic group or a sorority gal or fraternity brother. But while authentic pride is linked with real confidence in your group, hubristic pride is a false arrogance that belies insecurities about one's group."

I think there's some validity to the study, especially the delineation between authentic pride for one's team/ethnic group, and the more damaging boastful kind of pride that I'm against. Unfortunately, more people fall into the latter than the former category in my experience.

The angry Yankees fan screaming loudly that the "Red Sox SUCKS!" is really not so different from the black man screaming "Black power!" and "KILL WHITEY!" all the time. Both individuals have serious issues of self-doubt to work through. And when you lump them all together in a large group of similarly-minded individuals . . . well now you're just asking for trouble.

Like Gandhi, I believe in quiet humility and hard work to speak of one's actions, not boastful shouts.

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