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The Causes of Prejudice in Gran Torino

Walt Kowalski, the main character is a man that is conflicted and harden in is beliefs. What sets Walt apart from other men such as himself is his underlining need to have someone prove him wrong. The first step is to speak about the people that shared the center stage of this movie, Walt Kowalski and the Hmong people. “Hmong people generally come from the hill and mountain area just south of China. According to genetic evidence, Hmong people lived in China for 2000 years before generally migrating south in the 1700s. They moved to escape the oppressive Qing Dynasty” (Hmong). Walt Kowalski is an ideal example to illustrate the infantilization, baby talk, and miscategorizations portrayed by elder people. Clint Eastwood as Mr. Walt Kowalski plays a retired Polish American Ford factory worker and a Korean War veteran. Mr. Kowalski was a relative loner whose best friend for the most part was his yellow Labrador Retriever Daisy. Having a home in Highland Park, MI he was is the only white person left in his neighborhood and lived alone. The character had a very high cognitive functioning, was extremely independent and was aware of his likes and dislikes, namely his son and daughter in-law. During his birthday his son and daughter in-law bought him gifts, an arm extender and a phone. Those gifts only enhanced his active lifestyle with high cognition, very well-functioning hearing and good vision. Having a clear image of the character will help in his examination of why he had such dislikes, and some would argue hatred for the Hmong and any minorities. Having the fog of war and the conditioning embedded to hate your enemy can explain some of Mr. Kowalski’s behaviorist prejudicial attitude. Challenged by his inability to move beyond the Korean War and the resentment of the enemy, Walt carried a great deal of pride in his ability to defend the country’s interest in a just war against a people he saw as inferior. This led to an examination Walt’s individual behavior. Walt gives us the opportunity to focus on the four areas of study: the levels of prejudice, self-justification, personality, and frustration. We need to examine the level of prejudice for Mr. Kowalski, it was a life long belief that the people he went to fight in order to sustain freedom had no right to take part in the freedoms given in the country that he and his