Race to Stereotype

By YK

Dictionary.com defines it as a contest of speed; a competition; to achieve superiority. It also defines it as a group of persons, related by common descent or heredity. Race – it is ironic how much these two meanings overlap with each other, the quite literal transformation pertaining to its meaning. It is a global race of the races, subconsciously ingrained into the minds of the human race.

 

An individual will see and perceive a cultural perception first and get to know the person second.

 

There is this issue nowadays of cultural stereotypes. An individual will see and perceive a cultural perception first and get to know the person second. And what really sucks, is that we have come to accept it; come to accept that people will make assumptions dependant on the complexion of my skin, the colour of my hair, the size of my facial features, providing this indestructible barrier preventing successful assimilation into any apparent society.

News reports of people on public transport verbally and physically attacking people of colour, treating those who may be permanent inhabitants as pariahs. Like we are somehow infiltrating and detracting from your ideal Australia. Why does it need to be filmed in order for society to react (although not achieving anything but a few angry comments below the article)? These too-often scenarios are played over and over again, experienced on a daily basis. People are attacked because they are not speaking your “native tongue” – these minute misalignments of culture, fundamental to oppression and hierarchical pursuits, as one attempts to reach superiority and show their dominance over other races.

 

Stereotypes have created a distortion of how every individual should be.

 

I feel that I often need to prove myself in order to gain acceptance. If I want to be perceived a certain way, I will have to put in double the effort; critical of my actions. Okay, so maybe you don’t feel this way. Maybe it’s just my weird self. However, this ordeal of racial stereotyping has played such a significant role – rooted into my personality. There is this constant barrier that prevents me from just smoothly transitioning into new environments because I must break this stereotype that is associated with my culture. She must be this… She must like that… Stereotypes have created a distortion of how every individual should be.

It infuriates me that I have come to accept this – to acknowledge the fact that I will be seen in a different perspective because of my race. Being so careful in my surroundings so as to not give someone the excuse to criticise or judge me harshly with their underlying assumption of my culture. Please, for future reference, treat us as equals, and treat me like the Australian that I am.

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