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Perceiving the World

Henry David Thoreau once stated “The question is not what you look at, but what you see”. This quote shows how we often interpret things wrong by focusing on the wrong aspect of someone or something. In the article “The Decline of Violence” Michael Shermer explains how society continually believes the world is growing more dangerous therefore observing violence in our culture misleadingly. Our nation needs to remember to include the long term result in our conclusions. Another article called “Is Blind Hiring the Best Hiring” by Claire Cain Miller states something similar when it comes to false interpretations. The author explains how we often read resumes and judge someone immediately. Companies assume someone who attended a fancy college is more suitable for the job. Just because someone went to college, we should not assume they are more qualified.  According to these two articles people misleadingly judge others all the time. Both of these articles show how individuals infer things untruthfully and need to look below the surface to fully understand what they are seeing.  Thus, we often perceive our surroundings and peoples’ abilities inaccurately.

Human kind should not only focus on the immediate because the long term trends are also important. Today we tend to only focus on what is in front of us instead of the whole picture. “Be skeptical of claims that we live in an ever more dangerous world,” (Shermer). In this quote the author talks about trends that believe the world is more violent than it used to be. This fact is not true according to data in the article showing the world actually declining in violence portraying how we forget to look at the vast picture. “The problem with anecdotes about single events is that they obscure long-term trends.” (Shermer). Issues with looking at only the present is the long term usually also shows changes in our society. Shermer’s article helps prove how our first impressions are not always accurate and we end up perceiving things wrong.

Just because someone looks qualified for a job does not always mean it is true. Instead of looking at someone and judging their skills based on a resume, we have to dig deeper and evaluate their skills to understand how capable they are at occupations. “A surfeit of talented coders were routinely overlooked by employers because they lacked elite pedigrees,” (Miller). Today companies often claim to want to hire a diverse workforce, but few actually do. People nowadays repeatedly are prejudice towards others without meaning to be. “Companies rely too much on flawed human judgment when they recruit,” (Miller). Lamentably, we make mistakes by looking at people and judging them without figuring out the details. Forgetting to look at how qualified someone is and only looking at their resume is a common mistake that shows how we can make false assumptions.

Overall one can see how the general public sometimes forget to look at the large picture. Whether it is people observing long term results, or looking beyond a piece of paper such as a resume. These articles both show how we can perceive things incorrectly. For that reason, how humanity deduces their surroundings and peoples capabilities is not always accurate. Hence, I believe that it does not always matter what we look at but what we see.

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Mariel01 said...
today at 7:28 am
Inspiring article, really makes one think
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