How Scapegoating Harms
You cannot earn your place in a group that scapegoats you. You have already been written off.
Scapegoating is one of the most painful experiences you can have in life. It is always abusive and dishonest – I have never seen otherwise.
When someone is blamed which is an important part of scaepgoating, I think many bystanders or onlookers may give the accusers the benefit of the doubt for any number of reasons.
Some reasons might be:
- doing so is gracious
- wait for the facts
- a personal issue that causes them to accept the blamer’s version of things.
- biases about culpability.
Scapegoating is a transfer of responsibility from one to another.
Scapegoating is first and foremost a form of blame.
The point of scapegoating is to make sure whatever consequences ensue from the problem in question, they are applied to the person being scapegoated. Often the person being singled out is someone who is different in some way. In a group situation, the individual is not part of the “club” in the group. It is not unusual to scapegoat someone who is very knowledgeable in order to maintain practices that are unhealthy or worse. Those who scapegoat only want people who go along around them. If you are different from the social norm in a group you can be vulnerable.
Being aware of the practice of scapegoating as a form of coverup is important.
Noticing how those around you handle responsibility and accountability is the first step in taking you out of these potential situations. There is often a high degree of victimhood about those who scapegoat.
Watching out for the victim mentality will help you to be safe. You can be gracious without getting close to people in that frame of mind.
People are becoming more sophisticated about victimhood and scapegoating.
It is essential to ensure you are not naive about those with a victim mentality and a predisposition toward victimhood and blame.
Just being aware can help you limit the ability of others to cast you as the scapegoat.