Stereotype: A widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing, and everyday, high schoolers are subjected to the stereotypes placed on them by their peers.
All those people who think that everyone fits into a perfect frame of idiotic bigotry are sadly mistaken. People have their own flair and quirks that make them who they are.
Just because you get good grades doesn’t make you a nerd, and just because you play sports doesn’t make you a jock. You don’t fit into just one category; if everyone fit into one category, don’t you think people would stay in their own category and never meet new people?
We have to stop obsessing over what other people say we are. We decide what to label ourselves as, no matter what the girl in first period says or what everyone else thinks. We’re teenagers, it’s in our nature to rebel against those kind of labels, so why do we let them rule who we hang out with?
I have had quite a few “friends” come up to me and say that we can’t be friends anymore because I wasn’t what they considered to be “cool and popular.” It wasn’t a hard decision to make when I let that friend go. If they couldn’t accept me for who I was, then it obviously wasn’t a friendship worth keeping.
People embrace the labels placed on them like a security blanket and it’s almost disturbing how much someone is willing to change him or herself to be completely in touch with that label. To be just one stereotype means to cut off all other options of individuality, no personal flair of nerdy jock or gothic prep could even be considered.
I’m not saying that everyone will change their ways, or that no one will label another person at Northwood ever again, or that the social norm will collapse and everyone will be on an equal level, that would be way too ridiculous of an idea to even consider. I’m putting my opinion out there to make you all think: do all those labels even mean anything in the end?
Next time you try to label someone, take a moment to try and label yourself. I’m sure you’ll have a hard time fitting yourself into that perfect, oversimplified frame.
– By Morgan Yigdal