As it turned out, non-Jewish patrons seemed to express more anger over the situation than the Jewish ones. Psychologist Carrie Keating called it the "black sheep phenomena."
"What's fascinating about this bakery is that the whole room was transformed by the clerk's outrageous behavior," she explained. "What changed is that everyone started thinking about what was their religious group."
Keating explained that we tend to be harder on members of our own social or religious group when they bring down the rest of the group.
"It's even worse when one of us makes our group look bad by being so biased, so prejudiced, so anti-Semitic and we punish our group members when the deviate from our value system," she explained.
A recent ADL survey found that on average, three anti-Jewish incidents take place each day. They also reported that 30 million Americans hold anti-Semitic views, including some well known public figures.
Mel Gibson was severely chastised after spewing out a barrage of anti-Jewish remarks during his widely publicized DUI arrest in 2006. Veteran White House reporter Helen Thomas was pressured into retirement last summer after making anti-Semitic comments, and just last month, CNN anchor Rick Sanchez was fired for his anti-Semitic comments.
After our day of shooting, it is encouraging to note that every time we staged this scenario with our actors, someone always either spoke up or walked out in protest of the clerk's anti-Jewish remarks.
Psychologist Keating said studies show that voicing opposition to prejudicial behavior can make others rethink their actions and "in many cases being a little quieter about it the next time around."
The Anti-Defamation League offers a guide on how to confront Anti-Semitism that includes myths and facts about the Jewish faith where these slurs and insults often are rooted. Click here to download the guide from the ADL's website.