The Story of Jane Elliot: A Hero

Abbie Stillman
The Paw Print

Jane Elliot is a former elementary school teacher who introduced the ‘brown eye, blue eye experiment’ to her third grade classroom. The results were shocking. Children were made to look racism, hate, judgment, and discrimination in the eye. The first day of the experiment, they were told that kids with blue eyes were better, smarter, and dominant than those with brown. The brown eyed children were bullied, they were called names, and forced to sit in the back of the room. They wore collars so that they were easily picked out in a crowd. Playground equipment was forbidden for the brown eyed children. The next day, the brown eyed children were the superior. By the end of the experiment, every child had been bullied, hated on, called names, and were made to feel like lesser beings. These children went from good, kind children, to evil just because they were told they were premium or detestable due to the color of their eyes.
What is truly disturbing is that our society still teaches these behaviors to our children. Sure, it’s worse in some areas of the world, but it exist nonetheless. If you are colored, gay or lesbian, of other religious beliefs, or anything that can potentially be defined as ‘different’ you are judged and hated somewhere. Elliot made a strong point when she noted that adult white men were acting the way they accused colored people or gays or ‘different’ people to behave because they were being treated as though they were lesser beings.
People who have gone through her experiment or who don’t agree with it call her a bitch, which she gave a whole new meaning to. Being, In, Total, Control, Honey.  She pointed out that we created this racist, or ‘colorist’ as she named it, country ourselves. Human beings have hated people for things that they cannot control such as skin color.
Why do people hate difference? Because they’re scared of difference. The bigger question remains, why are people so scared of difference? Everyone is different in some way or another. Elliot told several stories about her experiences with the experiment; she shed a tremendous light on our government, on religion, and how we are still trying to separate church and state. Many schools have had their students sing The Pledge of Allegiance and God Bless America, both being prayers that are breaking law in separating church and state.
Elliot expressed extreme frustration because, people, its 2014 and she is still traveling the world to give this lecture. 2014, and we are still a society filled with such negativity. When does it end? How can it end? As long as these old fashioned beliefs and fears exist, this is our society. We created it for ourselves, how do we get rid of it?
Elliot’s family has gone through hell because of people’s hate and anger towards her brave act of teaching children and countless people the destruction of our ways. Jane Elliot is a hero. is powered by WordPress µ | Spam prevention powered by Akismet