"Why is psychology not front and center in the minds of our countrymen when the need is so great? Why have we not made addressing these matters our top priority and why are we not on the ramparts in Congress and in the media every day leading the discussion about how to address these pressing matters? Why do we spend our time and energy debating about how best to do science when the world starves for help? How long will it be before we realize that in terms of the survival of a profession, it is our social relevance that is the critical variable?"
APA Past-president Ronald E. Fox, PhD, during his plenary address titled "Towards Creating a Real Profession of Psychology."
"I believe in what you are doing. I think it is absolutely critical to this nation, and especially now with new threats before us of terrorism, weapons of mass destruction and such."
U.S. Surgeon General Richard Carmona, MD, on psychologists' role in emergency preparedness.
"Homophobia has been inaccurately classified as a phobia since its primary attitudinal components are devaluation and predisposition to aggression, not fear....Hetero-phobia, in contrast, may indeed be classified as a social phobia since its primary attitudinal and affective components are fear. It arouses physiological symptoms of anxiety and it can be managed with denial, repression and avoidance."
Douglas Haldeman, PhD, on gay men's attitudes toward straight men. Haldeman posed the question: Does the fear associated with straight men affect gay men's romantic relationships with each other? "I don't know," he said. "But I think it's a question that's worth asking."
"This profession of psychology has blessed me with two remarkable careers."
Psychologist and novelist Stephen White, PhD, the opening session's keynote speaker, on psychology's contributions to his writing.
Obesity and weight issues "should be talked about with diversity issues. We need to acknowledge that people come in many shapes and sizes. We need to have this discussed more and in the professional literature because psychologists are as vulnerable at passing on [weight] biases and perceptions as anyone else."
University of Akron associate professor James R. Rogers, PhD, during the session, "Counselor fat attitudes: the invisible bias."
"This is not the way things should be. Those reviewers are us. We need to clean up our act."
APA President Robert J. Sternberg, PhD, on his presidential initiative to foster civility in the peer-review process.
"When you see someone standing in front of the computer doing something, what's the first thing you think? They're working. You think they're doing something constructive. This thing has a positive valance with it. Our culture worships this. It's an icon. We think it's something educational. But actually in reality most time spent on the computer, not just the Internet, is not work-related. It's gaming, shopping, solitaire."
David Greenfield, PhD, of the Center for Internet Studies in West Hartford, Conn., on how people can become compulsive computer users.
"We're at a point where we need to take the study of genes into the study of behavior and try to understand how this genome will play out in the next decade."
Thomas Insel, MD, director of the National Institute of Mental Health, in highlighting behavioral research opportunities with the U.S. Human Genome Project.
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