Stop stereotyping

I don’t like it when a generalised statement is used to describe a group of people in a negative way. As a matter of fact, none of us chose to be born in the country where we were born. We just found ourselves there and we were raised accordingly. The odds of someone being raised as a Christian is very high if that individual was born into a Christian family. On the other hand, the same individual who has been a Christian all his/her life will most likely be of a different religion if born into a family and country where that particular religion is prevalent. When we have this understanding, then we are able to offer grace to everyone. When grace is offered, we will think twice before using generalised statements to bring a particular demographic below us.

I remember speaking with a group of young adults about love and respect. And someone voiced her frustration with being told to love everyone when there is so much fear attached to certain groups of people as a result of stereotypes. Her frustration was echoed by everyone in the room.

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I saw the above picture on Instagram few days ago and it made me start thinking of this issue again. To be honest no one likes being described negatively especially when you are trying to break free from those stereotypes. Most times we use these statements to make us feel and look better and superior to others. This isn’t just about salvation but about life in general.

Some people has missed out of life changing opportunities because they were blinded by stereotypes. We all are humans. That is what we all have in common before faith, race, gender, etc.

The fact that my husband has been physically attacked (as a result of racism) by a white man, doesn’t make every white person racist.

The fact that someone from an Arab country stabbed a man walking on the street, doesn’t make every Arabian a terrorist.

The fact that you were scammed by a black man, doesn’t make every black person a scammer.

The fact that your mum cheated on your dad doesn’t make every woman a cheat.

The fact that your African dad was very disrespectful to your mum doesn’t mean all African men are like that.

Meeting 100 blacks who all acted in a similar way doesn’t mean the other hundreds of millions of black people all over the world all act that way too. The same goes for other races and religions. When we put everyone on the same boat it shows how myopic we see. This brings about divisions and wars. Majority of people who live in these stereotyped countries are good. Evil somehow seems to always have a louder voice. Many people in these countries work and try the best they can to live peacefully. There are good and bad people in every country and every race. Your country and race is in no way superior to others. If we treat everyone like a human being; I mean if we really love others as we love ourselves, the world will be a better place. Let’s reflect on our sentences before we make them. Let’s start using the word ‘some’ instead of ‘all’ when it comes to this matter. Let’s challenge ourselves to ditch using generalised statements to bring down individuals. We all are human. We are all the same.

27 thoughts on “Stop stereotyping

      1. This is so profound Efua! We all need to be reminded of this. There are good people and there are bad people in every race and culture. May our world become better and may we see each through the eyes of God’s love.

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  1. This is a beautiful post. Unfortunately we live in a world of stereotypes. As a Nigerian anywhere where I go, I’m mostly seen as a scammer or a villain. I’ve lost job opportunities just because of where I come from. Thanks for sharing this post and spreading the truth. We should stop stereotyping people because of where they come from. There are good and bad people. We shouldn’t judge anyone without knowing them. Good post.

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    1. It’s heart breaking. It’s a shame how someone’s last name, nationality, skin colour, gender etc can be used against him/her. I cringe every time I hear people say ‘Nigerians are like….’ or ‘black people are like….’. These statements have created more war and divisions than peace

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  2. Stereotypes are harmful, even when it may seem like it’s harmless. I personally hate stereotypes. The fact that people think I should act a certain way based on my nationality, sex, personality etc. is not okay. I dislike this because people are creating preconceived notions about me based on what they think they know and not who I really am.

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    1. Yes sis. I wish we all can treat others as individuals and not putting a certain group of people in the same boat. This is one of the reasons why we struggle to love and accept others because even before they have had a chance to prove themselves we have already ruled them out

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      1. Yes ma’am. I think that’s why I’ve always enjoyed underdog stories. Underdog stories always seem to identify with some facet of my life. I often empathize with the underdog. I’ve experienced humiliation, been the outcast and treated like the black sheep.

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  3. Yes, I just had this discussion at church tonight with my family and pastor – in particular highlighting how extremists can give an entire people group a bad reputation. For example – I am proud to be a Christian, but it is heartbreaking to see the media highlight those who call themselves Christians that act in no way like Christ.

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    1. Exactly sis. Is really sad how one bad experience can rob an entire group of people of how they become perceived by others. It’s very easy for us to stereotype others especially if we have been hurt by someone who identifies with that group. But if we claim to be Christ like then we have to see everyone through the eyes of Christ

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