Biases


Some time ago, a friend posted in FB something that drew denigratory comments about MMDA. I think he tweeted MMDA to ask why the traffic was bad in a certain area to which MMDA replied that there was a “high density” of vehicles thereat.

Comments by friends laughed at MMDA’s response but I personally saw its point. No, I’m not trying to say I’m more perceptive than the rest but I just want to be fair. Except that I couldn’t bring myself to point out that the snide remarks directed at MMDA were unfair under that post made by someone I care about. I didn’t want to embarrass him and his friends. So what would I have wanted to write underneath?

Traffic can be caused not just by high density of vehicles but also by MWSS’ pipe laying activities,  an accident, a rerouting and such. But because MMDA is a government agency per se, many people are quick to put it down, even if it makes sense and is, at the very least, trying its best to do its work. We, yes, myself included, are quick to judge sometimes. Maybe it’s a lack of respect for the government agency itself, because it is government; maybe we think that those who people it are “just-just” – which isn’t fair. It smacks of bias on our part. And I too have had occasions to which I plead guilty of having done the same.

Days later, the person who posted the MMDA response to his tweet, perhaps to make amends or perhaps because he saw the light, tweeted MMDA re the traffic again and was responded to with the info that there was a collision involving two trucks, thus the traffic. See?

*******

Said FB post above brought to mind an incident decades back, illustrating how we sometimes force square pegs into round holes, just because. My husband was then working in a company that made snacks. One time he brought home chicharon packed in a Snowball labeled plastic pouch. Samples then were packed in whatever packaging was available. That time, we had guests in the house and asked them to try some. One noticed the label in the pouch and conjectured, “Snowball? Ah – because chicharon is light and fluffy?” Husband smiled and explained that the packaging was in fact for some other product of the company.

*******

Then yesterday, as we passed by White Plains, I saw this “plush” place that had plastic receptacles of varying sizes and colors in front of its gate. I smiled. It occurred to me that people might think the owner was making an (art) statement because the house was too rich looking, whereas, likely, there was just a leak somewhere that was being caught by those containers. If those same containers where in some other not so rich looking area, people wouldn’t think twice about judging why they were there at all.

Notice how in art exhibits, a strand of rope can be looked upon as art, while in some commoner’s house that strand of rope is just that? A strand of rope.

*****

Biases. 🙂

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