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Being a Bangladeshi who goes to an international school with people from allover, I've inevitably been the target of stereotypes. Some are funny, some hurt, but veryfew are accurate. There have been way too many instances in my life in which I havebeen expected to act a certain way, do a certain thing, or be a certain type of person.Why? Because of my nationality and religion.First of all, I'm not a terrorist because I'm Muslim.I'm Bangladeshi, not Indian andno, we're not the same. I don't eat curry all day and also, I don't always smell bad(maybe after PE).
I hardly ever let stereotypes get to me but every now and then,someone says something that you won't forget. One of those times occurred during 9thgrade science class. Our teacher was handing back our tests after he had finishedgrading them and we were all nervous but eager to see how we did. Being highschoolers we started comparing scores. I got one of the best grades in the class andwas over the moon, but limited my excitement to fireworks in my head. Out of nowhere,someone managed to extinguish my internal celebrations with just a few words. "Oh,you just got an A because you're Bangladeshi."No. that's not why I got an A. I got an Abecause I worked hard. I got an A because I paid attention during class and took notes.
I got an A because I sacrificed sleep to stay up and study.The person who said that was implying the stereotype that Bangladeshi peopleare naturally smart. While that certainly holds true for a small fraction of Bangladesh, it doesn't apply to the majority of us, and certainly not me. This stereotype bothered me alot because my nationality, or rather a stereotype was credited for my achievement,instead of the hard work and the effort I put into it. I felt as if my hard work was beingundermined and I couldn't accept that.
Obviously, this stereotype isn't as serious as others but it goes to show that allstereotypes can impact a person. While It's extremely difficult to change society's longheld views, we can follow Alexie Sherman's footsteps and do our best to break thestereotypes and try to show people that these stereotypes and overgeneralizationsaren't true.I found the following quote to be highly relevant to this topic. ‘’Stereotypes arederived from the actions of the 1% and applied to the rest of the 99% of people’’.
General I believe that stereotyping is an intense issue that happens everyday. Despitethe fact that it happens all the time people are still harmed by what their stereotypedeven it could be our own people like Sherman Alexie. We have to learn not to judgeindividuals before we meet them and wait till after we get to know them to form anopinion. Rather than stereotyping somebody really discover what they are religions orhow they look. So remember next time you see somebody very intelligent or havepreferable review over you don't attempt to let them down rather off value their diligentwork. And if you see somebody with various confidence don't expect they don't have aspirit. Everybody is different so it's not fair to stereotype anybody
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