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Stereotypes

Commentary by Peter Shepherd
Stereotypes
“Stereotypes exist because they are useful. They reduce the tremendous complexity of the world around us into a few simple guidelines, which we use in our everyday thoughts and decisions. However, the simpler and more convenient the stereotype, the more likely it is to be inaccurate, at least in part.” ~ Stuart Oskamp
Stereotypes are lazy thought; we don't need to listen or observe as we feel we know already. Except we don't - we just have a head full of prejudices.
“Stereotypes are fast and easy but they are lies, and the truth takes its time.” ~ Deb Caletti
Best to recognize them for what they are. As W.C. Fields said, "It ain't what they call you, it's what you answer to."
“Instead of being presented with stereotypes by age, sex, color, class or religion, children must have the opportunity to learn that within each range, some people are loathsome and some are delightful.” ~ Margaret Mead
More than that, they are individuals, each unique.
“People are not all evil or all good. You don’t teach compassion by categorizing people. Empathy and honest open communication are the only way to live your life.” ~ Shannon L. Adler
"Let us strive to maintain a community that understands diversity as a gift, sees anomalies as precious, and treats all basic principles with a hefty dose of skepticism,” says Gayle Rubin
“The problem with labels is they lead to stereotypes - and stereotypes lead to generalizations - and generalizations lead to assumptions - and assumptions lead back to stereotypes.” ~ Ellen Degeneres
We so easily create stereotypes based on convenient labels - we even do that to our friends, even though each is so much more than their label...
Stereotypes

Here’s some further reading on this theme...

Blending Gender ~ by Suzann Paneck Robins

Fully functioning, mature adults allow for all possible variations of self-actualization and integration. This is something to strive for as we expand our capacity for intimacy through intuition. At the same time, it is also necessary to be aware of our own personal boundaries and the limitations of our tolerance. Only then can we move toward acceptance of those who are different from us and eventually recognize that we are all part of the same whole of humanity. Continues...

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With Commentary by Peter Shepherd
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