Pride for one’s culture is a deep rooted emotion tied to many of us on Earth. The people who raised us with valuable teachings, who kept us from falling and those who taught us to strive for the best are those blessings in life that mold the very essence of who we are. It’s easy to have pride in oneself after having a strong support system that raises the very inklings of our character to a greater platform. It helps us choose who our future friends are and who makes the cut in being our one and only. Yet, what if that pride is only a self-serving ingredient in how we look at others. What if the pride we have for our culture or our race disappears staying true to those around us but rejecting all others?
We all tend to follow stereotypes with just about every race. In high school, we expected that tall, African American to play basketball since black people are supposedly better at sports. We all looked at the Asian guy for answers in Math class because they’re supposedly good at it. We throw these stereotypes at people based from where? I don’t know the person who started these generalizations. Thanks though for creating a whirlpool of confusion for today’s world because its only sending us backwards with these grounded perceptions.
It’s sometimes funny when we see these categorizations within our culture, but it can also be hurtful. It’s cool to be perceived as smart or as a good athlete. Yet, it’s harmful when because of your skin color you get pulled over and thrown in jail for almost nothing. It’s a pain when you get paid less money or treated like an unequal because of your cultural background or ancestral roots.
The wounds grow deeper though when these stereotypes are pointed within characters of your own race. It’s even more heartbreaking to hear a black man calling another black man “lazy” or “good-for-nothing.” It’s fine if it’s literally a trait of that one person. But for us to generalize our own people is a greater shame in itself.
There are many African Americans today who go out of their way to criticize and diminish their own people. There’s many who almost seem delighted to degrade the majority of their people’s lack of education, skin color, upbringings, etc. It sickens me to hear someone group all of their own people into a category, somehow excluding themselves, while happily tearing them to pieces.
There’s a cluster of black men and women who are repugnant to the idea of associating or dealing with their own people. Every race has some norms that they accept or are skeptical to. But to class all of them in a box is pathetic. I know there are some who lack a lot of class, education, manners, and are just….yea. Yet, there are people in EVERY race like that. People are people. They act a certain way because of who they are, not because of their race. Unfortunately, we focus too much on the number of them who are not the best role models in society rather than the ones who are.
The more we classify our own culture into a box of stereotypes, the more we set ourselves back creating a deeper hole of negativity and self-loathing. The cultural pride that once stood strong during the 1960’s is a mere ghost to what exists today. We have to try to love and understand one another instead of grouping together a stereotype and accepting it. We have to try to fight against the stereotypes to make our culture even more powerful and gain our pride back.