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View Full Version : When Stereotypes Collide


Seanette
08-13-2006, 03:15 AM
Up until fairly recently, I'd always thought racial stereotypes were produced by a combination of Hollywood shorthand and intellectual laziness. Being in a much more ethnically diverse place than in the past, I'm starting to wonder about that.

When I'm deciding what I think of a person, pigment is not even on the assessment list. I assess on intelligence, attitude, sense of humor, character, etc. So for me, it's distressing to see people doing their best to live down to the stereotypes generally associated with their [race|color|orientation|whatever]. Why provide ammo to the David Dukes of the world?

Classic example of this occurred yesterday, at 99 [for non-USians, this is a discount store. Items are X number for 99 cents US currency]. Two people in front of me in line, black woman doing her best "gangsta ghetto grrrl" pitching a bitch fit first over prices, then over alleged short-changing. This collides with Asian checker doing her best "Dragon Lady" impression (very snappish, strident, etc.).

This was NOT pretty to have to watch or listen to. Gangsta Ghetto Grrrl "won" in that she was handed four more dollars, after much yelling, accusing, cursing, etc. Dragon Lady "won" in that she got rid of the problem "customer".

As for other customers in that line, the store management, etc.? Pretty clear loss for all bystanders in this, including yet another reduction in my general opinion of humanity.

One-Fang
08-14-2006, 01:09 AM
IMHO, stereotypes start for a reason.

Yes, certainly, I will evaluate any individual person I meet on the basis of their specific behaviour, attitude, etc. But that notwithstanding, it is my impression that stereotypical behaviour is generally seen to be well distributed within the group to which it is attributed. Stereotypes aren't just made up, y'know?

Seanette
08-14-2006, 01:43 AM
IMHO, stereotypes start for a reason.

Yes, certainly, I will evaluate any individual person I meet on the basis of their specific behaviour, attitude, etc. But that notwithstanding, it is my impression that stereotypical behaviour is generally seen to be well distributed within the group to which it is attributed. Stereotypes aren't just made up, y'know?
I'd always thought they were (I grew up in a very ethnically homogenous area, so haven't really had a lot of experience with other ethnic groups up until the last couple of years or so).

trunks2k
08-15-2006, 06:06 PM
I'd always thought they were (I grew up in a very ethnically homogenous area, so haven't really had a lot of experience with other ethnic groups up until the last couple of years or so).

I don't think they're entirely made up. But I think we're more likely to notice someone that fits in with a stereotype than those that don't. Having spent the last 5 years or so living in a primarily "urban" area, there sure are a lot of people that fufill the stereotypes. But then as I think about it, it was mainly the stereotypes that I noticed. People that acted "normal" just blended into the background.

Tria
08-16-2006, 08:38 PM
But then as I think about it, it was mainly the stereotypes that I noticed.

In my personal experience the person complaining about being stereotypes is acting the stereotype.


"If you don't want to be stereotyped, don't act the stereotype."