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Science Discovers As*hole Babies Like Puppets Who Bully Other Puppets

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77329This sounds like it was the most adorable science experiment ever! I need to go back to college and get a degree in whatever field that will allow me to work with these fancy scientists in the field of “Doing Extremely Important Scientific Experiments Involving Babies And Bunny Puppets.” I am prepared for this new career by knowing where I can purchase a lab coat and also because I know how to make  Bunny FooFoo fingers in case we do not have access to the correct puppets. According to Boston.com:

Led by scientists at Yale University and the University of British Columbia, the researchers posed a complicated social scenario to 9-month-old and 14-month-old babies: If they saw a rabbit puppet who was either similar or different from them in some fundamental way—in this case, preferring graham crackers or green beans—would they care how others treated the rabbit?

I can tell you right now that if I was posed with this question I would obviously prefer those puppets who eat graham crackers. I have always felt that you should never have a preference for a puppet that eats green beans. Even though green beans can on occasion be very delicious.

The researchers already knew two basic things about the choices and preferences of infants. Just like adults, who tend to like people who are similar to them,
 

And this is where the study gets super adorable because the adorable scientists played games with the adorable babies where they had the puppets show a preference to either the green beans or the graham crackers by saying “Oh Yum!” or “Oh Yuck!” And then they had the rabbit puppet play with a ball and a puppy puppet who either helped the bunny play or else came and snatched the ball away.

Then, the babies were given a choice: Did they reach for the dog puppet who had helped or harmed? When the rabbit puppet shared their tastes in food, the babies preferred the dog puppet who helped out. When the rabbit puppet was dissimilar, however, they chose the dog puppet who had stolen the ball.

Haha! So this study is scientific evidence that babies who like graham crackers like bunny puppets who also like graham crackers, and babies who like graham crackers think that bunny puppets who prefer green beans deserve to have their ball stolen by sneaky puppy puppets. I suppose we should probably go with the scientific explanation:

“I was surprised, and my liberal bleeding heart sunk like a stone, when we found them actually choosing, really robustly, the puppet who punishes” the rabbit puppet that did not share the baby’s preference, said Karen Wynn, a professor of psychology and cognitive science at Yale and senior author of the work, published in the journal Psychological Science.

 

The experiment is part of a larger experiment that Wynn wants to conduct to determine if there are ways that humans can talk to their babies and children about differences and  teach them about underlying similarities, which to me sounds like just a super fancy way we can curb future bullying and prejudices. Or else maybe Wynn just wants another excuse to play with adorable babies and bunny puppets!

(Image: Mastermind Toys)