Stereotyping,can there be a positive?
Stereotyping in society,are things going way to far?As people of society we had to pick it up from somewhere,it’s a monkey see,monkey do world ( at least for the most part).The negativity of stereotyping has gone up by leaps and bounds.Are we more apt to stereotype someone because we feel superior or because we are afraid or perhaps it’s just common in this day and age to do so.
More often when someone stereotypes someone else it is in a negative way and aimed at a individual or group of people.Stereotyping is usually not accurate and used in a sense to hurt someones feelings.It is the lack of understanding and ignorance that we stereotype placing second hand labels on someone.
At some point we have all have been guilty of stereotyping someone.With common phrases such as “would you look at that guy he’s so geeky” or “that girl is such a blond”.We do this because we lack the first hand knowledge of actually knowing that person it’s easier to place a stereotype label on them,right?The three stereotypes most often finding themselves targets are the elderly,the homosexuals and those of different races.These are the negative stereotypes.
Stereotyping the elderly is usually done more discretely,like in a car or in conversation without their knowledge.I have heard this before “they can’t do that they are just to old” or “move it grandma!”.I believe that by the time someone reaches their golden years that they have earned the right to be a bit slower and a bit more cautious,would you holler at you own parents like that and more so would you want someone else to holler at them like that?
Sexual orientation seems to be a easy target for those that like to name call.The most common terms used to disgrace a persons sexual orientation are “faggot ” and ” dike” and usually it’s because of a way a guy talks or the way a woman’s hair is cut that provokes such.Now, society is mainly homophobic ,the majority of people don’t like to see members of the same sex holding hands or kissing.But, do you think that since this their lifestyle that they like to see members of the opposite sex hold hands or kiss?
A persons race,we live in a America where we see different ethnicities everyday so, what is the problem?Prejudice is the problem.For instance several people can’t help it if they see a middle eastern person with a turban on their head to call them a “towel head” or if they see a hispanic taking a break from a job they call them ” lazy mexicans”,it’s like second nature.Did anyone ever stop to think that maybe that so-called “lazy mexican” had already worked 9 hours that day and deserved a break? or that turban that the ” towel head ” wears actually is beneficial.
We have been stereotyping people since at least the 1940’s.A common term used then was “Hipster” this referred to a jazz influenced trend,nothing wrong with that.Then in the 1950’s there was ” Beatnik” this was someone who was usually involved in music,struggling writers,not bad.The 1960’s gave us the term “Rocker” this was generally a association with music and the way someone dresses,this is still used today.A few new terms that have recently popped up are,”Emo”,”Gothic” and ” Punk” these all refer to the kind of music someone likes and the way they dress.Now if you notice no one would usually be offended by these stereotypes because they are usually evident and factual.
Also,slang stereotyping such as “jock”,”surfer”,”teenybopper”,”yuppie”,”crazy” and “nerdy” can be positive.Referring to someone as a “jock” is basically saying that they are really into sports.A “surfer”,someone who surfs a lot,usually their occupation.A “teenybopper” this is a fun reference it is a word that describes a preteen girl that is into current fashion and music.A “yuppie” someone who is usually well dressed and well educated.”Crazy” this is often used to describe a action that someone is doing not the mentality of someone.”Nerdy” different than calling someone a straight up nerd usually used in reference to how they are acting and not in a bad sense.
Yes,there is a positive stereotype if you have the knowledge to know the difference.Most people just need to take a few seconds and think before they speak and take a look at the bigger picture,put yourself in their shoes for a change and realize that if you say something negative to someone that it doesn’t make you a stronger or better person it makes you ignorant to the facts.