Additionally, as human beings, some researchers argue that we are hardwired to prejudge things or people that are "different" from us as an innate survival method to protect us from harmful threats (http://www.racebending.com/v4/interviews/transcriptmichael-d-baran-cultural-anthropologist/)
Prejudice becomes an issue when we attach negative patterns of thinking to these biases and assign oppressive ideologies that marginalize certain groups, while administering power to others.
With the understanding that the majority of the prejudices we possess based on race, gender, sexual orientation, etc., are the direct result of social programming, we have the capabilities to UNLEARN these damaging patterns of thinking and the first step towards this psychic freedom is acknowledgment.
When we acknowledge something, we undergo a conscious process of recognizing its truth or existence. Recognizing the reality that you have prejudicial thoughts about a particular group or issue is one of the first steps to the internal healing and freeing process that releases us from the bondage of learned hatred.
An often difficult and arduous process, it's easy to cleave to denying one's own prejudices because let's face it, who wants to admit they have negative or biased thoughts about a certain group? This admission of harboring sullied thoughts is quite threatening to us and the moral or good-natured images we have of ourselves. Confronting ourselves and standing honestly in our truth is one of the healthiest things we can do for ourselves and each other.
Acknowledgment brings that critical internal awareness we all need in order to be the vehicle for change that liberates our society from the maladies that marginalize and ultimately oppresses us all. One thing to remember is that prejudices, like habits, can be UNLEARNED and with the intention and determination to renounce these biases, the path to compassion, basic human kindness and inner peace is realized.