Using PET scans, scientists can now observe the brain at work. They already know that “real” and “false” memories activate different parts of the brain, which could validate the experiences of abductees, if an objective test of them is ever conducted. Now it’s been discovered that PET scans can reveal whether or not an individual is racially prejudiced. Tests have revealed that the brain area associated with self-control becomes active when prejudiced Causasians are shown photos of, or interact with, people of a race they dislike, even if they claim no racial prejudice. Discoveries like this may lead to an ability to virutally read the mind–for scientists to discover our most hidden thoughts and feelings.
Shaoni Bhattacharya writes in New Scientist that people whose PET scans reveal their prejudice don’t do well on a test of their thinking ability right after a face-to-face interview with a black person, probably because they’re mentally exhausted after having to exercise so much self-control over their feelings and actions.
Researcher Jennifer Richeson says, “They are either trying to inhibit or control something?but we don’t know what that something is. It could be an emotional reaction, or thoughts that come to mind. Or it could be something as benign as simply trying not to make errors.”
If PET scans eventually become as commonly given to employees as urine tests for drugs are now, we could find ourselves living in a world where we’re judged by our thoughts, rather than our actions.
How to people feel about the visitors? Some hate them, some treasure them, and some are confused. The whole gamut of emotions is presented in their letters to Whitley, and you’ll be sure to find similarities to your own experiences here.
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