I’m going to talk about stereotyping because I happen to be the butt of a lot of stereotypes. When one looks at me, some may think that I do drugs and drink and party all night long. Some think that I’m emo, so I cut myself and listen to bands like Bullet for My Valentine. I’m sure there are many other things people can think about me without a second thought. Even if I used to cut myself, it wasn’t for attention like emo kids. In fact, I’d try my best to hide it. And the only “whiny” band I listen to is My Chemical Romance, but I hated their first album, and only listen to their second album every now and then. They have a different sound than most emo whiny butt licking bands. Even the Used, who I also hate, has ONE song I like, and that’s “Taste of Ink.” I was listening to it hard one day, and his voice is so annoying, I said, “how can I stand to listen to this song?” I guess it’s the melody; it’s easy to sing to. But I hate any of their other songs. Also, people automatically assume that if you dress unorthodox, or if you have punky colors in your hair, or have piercings or tattoos, that you do drugs and drink, and are ruining your life. They don’t assume that you are individual, and you have a life that is calm and good… nope. And as for partying? Yes, I’d love to go to a rave or something, but only for the thrill. I wouldn’t dare drink anything there, for fear of it being laced, nor would I accept anything from anyone. Plus, I don’t have the money, and my work schedule doesn’t accomodate it. I’d rather just throw my own party, and I have. I didn’t want to go to my senior prom, because I thought it was stupid and pointless, even if my boyfriend at the time would’ve been more than happy to go with me. So instead I threw my own house rave. I charged people five dollars unless they brought food, drinks, or glow sticks. It was made for those who were either to young to go to prom, or they just didn’t want to go. And it was a blast. Some people who went to prom later told me they wished they hadn’t gone, and went to my party instead.
I bring up this issue because I noticed something. A lot of the times, people won’t hire you if you have piercings, tattoos, and weird hair. In fact, when I applied for PetSmart, right in the application it said you are limited to one piercing in each ear lobe. I have three, and one lip piercing, no tattoos though. But at Walgreens, there are three of us with lip piercings, two of us with tattoos, and even one of the assistant managers has three ear lobe piercings in each ear. My coworker asked my manager if she could get a sleeve, and he said, “we don’t care what you look like here. Have you seen Kara’s hair?” Boosh. But it’s true. I have blonde hair with pink and purple streaks in the front.
Every now and then, I’ll get conservative old people who don’t approve of my appearance, but lately, I get more compliments, even from old people. I hope this is because people are realizing that more people, no matter what label they may be classified in society are expressing themselves. I try not to label people anymore, but even girls I would consider “preps” are getting lip piercings, which were usually associated with outcast labels. Now, usually when you see someone who looks socially out of the ordinary, it’s because they have some sort of artistic ability, and their mind is free to wander. Now, in a lot of the cases, this is not true, which is why people associate us with bad habits.
I hate the people who make their stereotypes true. “All black people can’t speak right and listen to rap music and steal crap while doing drugs and having sex with different women.” Yes, some black people do this, but so to white people. I’m sure we all know some black people who don’t fall under this stereotype. “Mexican are lazy and none of them know how to speak english, and they all came here illegally.” Again, not true. Many Mexicans I’ve known are not lazy, and some of them actually finished high school and went to college, thank you very much! Plus, I meet customers that come from places in Europe that can barely speak english and probably came here illegally too. “Asians are all smart as hell, but can’t drive.” I’ve met asians who don’t even try to finish their homework. “All middle eastern people are terrorists.” Guess what? There were MANY middle eastern girls at my school who came here because they didn’t agree with the way some people thought in their country. And you know, it takes a lot of guts to leave your country, learn English, and come to our country and take the hardest test known to man; the American Citizenshop Test. In my civics class we took a mini version of this test. All of us had been born in America, and none of us passed.
Also, the reason why I don’t label people anymore is because I’ve learned that even certain cliques don’t match up to their stereotype. I’ve known intelligent preps, intelligent jocks, happy goths and emos, cool and attractive nerds, litterate “gangster” looking kids, and so on.
The problem is that the reason we have these stereotypes is because a lot of people make their stereotypes true, and that’s what hurts us that don’t live up to our stereotype. I could be considered emo by some people, but hell… I shop at Hot Topic, an emo/goth store, but I also shop at Claire’s and Forever 21, which are “prep” stores. Who cares, as long as it’s what you think looks good on you. I’ll mix a skirt I got at Hot Topic with a shirt I got at Forever 21. Who the fuck cares?
Also, stereotypes relating to sex. Females are weak and are meant to clean and like girly stuff. We’re also crazy, which I think is true, only because we are extremely horomonal on our period, we jump to conclusions too fast, and I think we might be more prone to depression. Also, according to scientific studies, we tend to focus more on school work, making us seem more intelligent, and we also have more violent tendancies than males, believe it or not. Of course, again, there are females that don’t express these attributes. My old roomate was and still is a fucking idiot. But still. I will admit I’m pretty good at cleaning, and enjoy some household chores, and I am pretty weak because I’m too lazy to work out. I also enjoy colorful things, girly stuff, and jewlery. That’s pretty normal. But I also love violent video games, “guy” animes like Dragonball Z, repliles, bugs, and wrestling. So what? There are girls who are so prissy it’s disgusting, and there are girls who are complete tom boys and won’t even go near a flower. And then there are males. They are stupid, incompetant, violent, lazy, loud, immature, and only think about sex. Guess what? Females think about sex just as much as males do. And I know plenty of intelligent men. Yes, it’s true that in most cases, females mature faster than males, but again, going back to my old roomate; twenty, and still whining to her mother that she doesn’t ever give her what she wants, and that she hates her, and crap like that. We’re all loud, that’s how we have fun. And hell, I’m pretty damn lazy too, but I get up and go to work anyway. The reason why men are “stupid,” is because their minds aren’t as scattered as ours. Because of our horomones, we think, “well what if this happens? And because he says this, does it mean this? What do I do if this happens? This means that, and that means this. And he must be this.” Such and such. Men are more like, “I’m gonna do this now. Oh, that happened. Okay.” Not saying that they’re simple minded, it’s just that us women have trouble relaxing. Estrogen is not a fun horomone; it causes us to panic. Testosterone I believe causes confidence and maybe a violent nature. But we both have these hormones. Women always assume men are doing something fishy if they happen to say the “wrong thing.” Frankly, when we get mad, they don’t know what the hell they did wrong! Even gay guys, who relate to women a lot more than straight guys show the “what did I do wrong?” attribute. But again, both sexes show attributes of eachother, some more than others.
What I hate is people who make the stereotype tru, like I said before. It gives us a bad name. I’m a vegetarian. That must mean I oppose everyone who eats meat, and they’re all evil and I’m a hippie, right? WRONG! I hate PETA, and I hate people who protest in front of meat shops, or try to tell meat eaters that they are evil. Are you going to tell a lion that its evil because it eats a zebra? Probably not, because they’re soft, cuddly wittle animals, and it’s in their nature. Well, we’re animals too, and it’s in OUR nature as well. We just have the power of choice. I decided to stop eating other animals, that doesn’t mean you have to. It’s harder than you think. I had to give it up slowly. First, red meat, then poultry, and finally, I gave up fish, which some people don’t classify as meat, but it’s still an animal. I still eat cheese and eggs because you don’t have to kill chickens or cows to get them. And you can tell if an egg is fertile when you crack it. Some people argue, “well the conditions that the cows and chickens are put under is aweful.” Yes, I know all about it. Truth of the matter, not all of us have the money to buy expensive milk and eggs from a nice farm. These things are expensive as it is. It’s sad, but it’s the way things are. Same with people harming the environment. Yes, these are horrible things, but people aren’t going to change, cause they don’t care. PETA made a big deal out of Obama killing a fly in an interview. Well… flies, along with other diptera, are disease carrying insects that can give you parasites. Oh, but that’s okay, cause parasites are living creatures and deserve to feed off of the food you’re supposed to be eating. It’s in their nature to kill us slowly. Save the cuddly tapeworms!
Fact of the matter is, I hope that if you, the person who is reading this, believed in these stereotypes, you will change your mind and try to figure out the real person behind the tattoos and see if they’re going to mug you, or if they really just want to hold a fluffy bunny and feed it a carrot.