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Robert W. Fuller

Robert W. Fuller named the problem of rankism in Somebodies and Nobodies and described how societies can promote universal dignity in All Rise. With Pamela A. Gerloff he co-wrote Dignity for All - a handbook for the Dignity Movement. His most recent books are Religion and Science: A Beautiful Friendship?, Genomes, Menomes, Wenomes: Neuroscience and Human Dignity, and The Rowan Tree: A Novel.



20 Ways

20 Ways to Combat Rankism

1. Break the taboo on rank. Make it a safe subject for discussion in the workplace.

2. Acknowledge the roles of others and support equitable compensation.

3. Keep your promises to “somebodies” and “nobodies” alike.

4. Teach your children their rights. Respect children so they will be respectful.

5. Honor your Inner Nobody and your Inner Somebody alike.

6. Be aware rankism begets rankism. If you’re feeling frustrated, don’t pick on someone of lower rank; and don’t kick the dog!

7. Encourage respect for the other side in sports, debate, and daily life.

8. Think about what you want to pass on. And do it.

9. Health care providers can enlist patients as partners.

10. Show the world dignity through your profession.

11. Recognize that servers are people, too.

12. Try to see outside your position and build a model that synthesizes your outlook with the views of others.

13. Give recognition to someone who deserves it.

14. Bring dignity to law enforcement and conflict resolution.

15. Choose not to participate in disrespectful jokes or conversations.

16. Give your attention to someone you might normally avoid interacting with. Someone with a disability. Someone of another culture. Someone of a different faith.

17. Assist or advocate for immigrants, homeless individuals, the disabled, the elderly, anyone who is especially vulnerable to assaults on their dignity.

18. Offer assistance to someone who may not be getting the help or recognition he or she needs – an elderly neighbor, a new mother, a caregiver.

19. Ask questions about people in authority. Do they use their power to help others, or to keep them down? Have they earned their authority or are they just assuming it?

20. Exemplify rather than exhort.