This I Believe…Individuality

Derrick - Houston, Texas
Entered on March 2, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
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I believe that a person should not be criticized about how they act and talk from the color of their skin. When i was a young boy, I lived in the “hood”. As I made my way through elementary school, I was never told about how to act or talk, but i knew to use manners. Nothing went wrong until late in my middle school year. Then all of a sudden on a raondom spring day, some random person aid to me, why do I act so proper and do not speak likea typical black person. At the time, I did not know what to think about what that person said. As time went on, I satyed the same, not faltering for anyone.

I became interested in anime and foreign cultures. I even started to learn the language, but that was onl a hobby. One day my mother asked me why dont I learn anything about our own culture, but what was there to learn? I knew abut my heritage and who I am as a person, which I knew was the most important thing to me. As i made my way through the second year of high school, I was “different” because of the way I acted and the things I liked. All the time people asked me why I act the way I do. I told them that I choose to be who I am and I was not going to chane for anyone. It frustrated me that people judged you by the color of your skin and the way you act as a whole. Just because someone is black does not mean that you have to talk slang or Ebonics.

In order to distinguish yourself from others you have to be different in your own wa, that is what I believe. I am proud of who I am and that is a Black American. People are still wrapped in racial stereotyping that they do not realize the world is not what it once was, and this is a new generation for all people, of different backgrounds. I will never change my belief because what I believe in makes me different and that is all there is to it.