“Stereotypes, they’re sensual, cultural weapons. That’s the way that we attack people. At an artistic level, stereotypes are terrible writing.” Judging people based on their color, religion and sex is not right because we don’t have the right to judge others. Society has categorized the types of people based on their attributes. Today I’m a Muslim and others have prejudiced me several times due to my religion. I have ignored these stereotypes because many people are not correctly informed about the ethics of Islam. In order to prevent these stereotypes from spreading rapidly I will have to do something about it. As a result the Muslim community is the community I belong to because I can make an impact by educating others about Islam. Another community I feel like I belong in is the south Asian community.

After the notorious event of 9/11 people were disgusted by Islam. Many people referred to it as “the terrorist group”, which agitated me because we were not a violent community. I later realized people were not educated on Islam and negative figures such as Osama Bin Laden left a bad connotation on Islam. It is ironic that many people perceive Islam as violent religion, because it is a religion of peace and submission. As an incoming freshman and Muslim at UT, I think the best community I will fit in is IMSA (Ismaili Muslim Student Association). I believe this community will try to convey the real message on Islam and will educate the people about my religion. Also this organization will help me meet new people who are from the same cultural background. The people I may meet through this organization could provide me with the right connections. Being with a group of Muslims with the same background story will make me feel comfortable because all of the people in this organization can relate to each other. Islam encourages unity and I will be united with my fellow Muslims.

My parents have dedicated their lives for me to become successful and go to college. This is important in the south Asian community because all of our parents have migrated from different countries. My parents have traveled across the world so I can have a better life. I believe being part of the south Asian community will give me drive to never stop giving up because my parents have sacrificed for me. Also I have noticed that many think that south Asians are pressured to become a doctor or engineer. In fact I was never pressured to any career choice. Many people always think this significant stereotype. Even if we are occasionally forced, our parents do it out of love. Encouraging those fields are not bad because in the long run they pay off. Finally the south Asian community will provide me that motivation and ambition.

Ultimately what people think should not matter to others. As the saying goes, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me”. People should ignore these stereotypes because they are insignificant. If one becomes involves in the communities he or she likes then it will give the individual more confidence. Lastly I think joining these different communities will shape my perspective and make my mindset more diverse.

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One Response to Communities

  1. Juan

    I think that you are correct. People shouldn’t be judge for something like religion. The fact that you adhere to certain belief does not shape you in one individual way. You are a composite of many things that you like, belief and were just born with. As to people labeling all Muslims “terrorists” they have a wrong perception, is not that one culture is evil as a whole but that anybody can be bad. There is no predetermined “badness” to any race or culture, some people are just bad, it doesn’t matter if they’re Christians, Jewish, Muslim or any other religious affiliation.

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