A new study finds that even though everyone HATES IT when racist people say “but I have [insert minority] friends,” that shit does kind of work.

The new study published in Social Psychological & Personality Science showed people various racist or non-racist posts on Facebook, accompanied by various permutations of single-race or mixed-race group photos, or statements like “some of my best friends are Asian” as a preface to an anti-Asian comment.

Let’s flash forward to those scientific findings! “The presence of Asian friends made the conceivably racist comments seem relatively benign, and observers were less offended and upset by them. The data suggest that minority friendships can partially offset costs associated with expressing prejudice.”

In other words, the world’s most annoying and transparently self-serving tactic for shielding oneself from charges of racism is, in fact, effective.

I guess just... don’t tell anyone.

[Via The Washington Post. Photo: AP]