I have traveled up and down the world, and have moved a totally of six times. Everywhere I go I experience some sort of prejudice it is not always directed towards me. It usually is not, but towards a group of people. I think all of this is silly; we live in the 21st century! We have electric cars, cell phones so thin they practically slice through paper, music players smaller then the palm of your hand. If we are so advanced, why are people still being judged by the color of their skin, religion, or their sexual orientation? People should never be judged by their skin color, religion, or who they like. Yes, these problems have not just come out of thin air. They have followed people through hundreds of years, and yes old habits die hard, well… get over it! Who wants to follow the ways of people who thought the earth was flat?
The one thing I have experienced first hand is the generalization on black people, as well as Africans. When people talk to me on the phone before meeting me, they are certainly surprised when they see me, even if they do not always say it, I can tell. As a “black” person who is half American, I am classified into that group of “ghetto”. The fact is my dad wears his person pants up where they are supposed to be, and my whole family pronounces their er’s. Throughout high school, which hasn’t been long I have been labeled an “oreo” black on the outside, white on the inside, and then teased when I do say things that are “white”. I do not take any of it as an offense, but after a while, it tends to get old. Why would people expect me to act a way I have not been exposed to? The fact is I grew up in the suburbs. It would be silly for me to act “ghetto” that is not who I am.
When people hear that I am Kenyan the always ask why I do not have an accent, and if I wore clothes when I lived Africa, even people that have known me for a long time. This one thing really gets to me. Even after I show them pictures of the elite international school I went to that costs thousands of dollars a year, they still ask the same old questions. I was always so annoyed when I came home, and told my mom what the kids had said. Then one day I realized, I cannot be mad at them for the things the do not know. The only thing they see on the news is children with swollen bellies, and people doing tribal dance wearing nothing but a loin cloth.
If we can teach people to look beyond the stereotypes, and just to judge for what is within. The world will slowly unfold to something more beautiful then what is it today. I now understand that it’s not only the people that do not understand, and create stereotypes, but that it’s the ones that understand, and say nothing. So here’s me saying something. Spread the love, not the prejudice.
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