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Lose the Labels

Assumptions.  Generalizations.  Accusations.  “All men are like that.”  “All black people do that.”  “All white people…..”  “All Catholics…..”  “All Republicans…..”  “All Democrats…..” “All New Yorkers……” “All Southerners…..”  “All Americans…..”  “All Europeans…..”  No.  Not “ALL” of any gender, race, religious order, political party, or resident of any area are “ALL” of anything.  We are individuals.  Some of us are geared to think independently.

Recently, the Roy Moore (U.S. Senate Candidate) scandal(s) have been front and center in the news.  He’s being accused of inappropriate conduct with underage females over the course of several decades.  Some people in Alabama are still supporting him, and still planning on voting for him.  Not all.  Alabama does get a lot of heat because of it’s past political problems and race issues.  I get that.  However, not ALL residents of Alabama are horribly racist people.  My father was raised in Alabama (in the 1920’s to early 1940’s), and was one of the least racist people I ever knew.  And yet, I have heard so many people criticize the whole of Alabama as a negative, horribly backwards place.  Alabama…..the home of Harper Lee, Truman Capote, Coretta Scott King, Hank Aaron, Rosa Parks, Ralph Abernathy, Nat King Cole, Lionel Hampton, Joe Louis, Helen Keller, and Willie Mays…..all playing important roles in our nation’s history through their roles in music, literature, sports, civil rights, and human rights.  And let’s not forget the Tuskegee Airmen!

My ex-husband always claimed to hate people from New York, yet I don’t think he really knew anyone from there.  He just didn’t like the aggressive way they are portrayed on television and movies.  Now I am married to a native New Yorker, who is loud and rough around the edges, but a complete teddy bear.  All of his friends in New York who he grew up with, have been so nice to me, and are a ton of fun! The whole crew is hilarious.  There was nothing not to like.  They all treated me with respect, and acted as if they’d known me forever.

Not all Americans are close minded, naive, self-centered country bumpkins.  Not all small town residents are illiterate and backwards.  Not all Americans from cities are egotistical snobs.  Not all men are chauvinist pigs who disrespect women.  Not all women are gossipy, cliquey, and jealous.

I feel like I’m hearing stereotypes and generalizations more and more often.  I try not to do that, but I’m getting really tired of hearing it from some parts of our society.  I wasn’t raised that way.  Whether it’s our government officials, news outlets, one religious group against another religious group, or just individuals with preconceived notions….it isn’t fair. Give people a chance.  Don’t put people into groups you deem as negative if you really know nothing about them, or have never visited where they live. Don’t judge them if you don’t understand where they come from.

I’ve been fortunate to have lived in a lot of places, and have traveled a lot.  If I lived in a small town, I ventured to the nearest cities quite often.  I took some pretty cool vacations.  I read.  I talk to people.  I am open minded and give people a chance, no matter what their background.

Stop labeling people!  It just isn’t nice, and it isn’t fair.

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