THE VIRUS CALLED STEREOTYPING
Hello readers, every opportunity to write is always a thing of joy for me and you know I always have juicy-juicy issues and serious matters to comment on. So, yea, today on Lifestyle, I’d be talking (or writing about) STEREOTYPING and this is going to be a looooong post yea, fasten your seat belt! It’s gonna be a loooooong ride.
So, who is guilty of the aforementioned? Many of us are! . . . Almost everybody is!. . . I for one, almost guilty.
Stereotyping really, is a serious problem in Nigeria. I don’t know about elsewhere, maybe when I leave the shores of this country to tour around, I’d know but till then, I know about my very own country. Also, I think I could also say that Stereotyping is more indigenous to Yoruba than its Igbo, Hausa, Efik, Ibibio etc. this doesn’t mean these tribes don’t stereotype.
This is what I mean; Yoruba is a tribe with sub-tribes so disparity among these tribes is a well-known issue and at times, this can be dated back to the histories between one sub-tribe and another. So, you have stuffs like, Ijebu doesn’t like Egba because. . . I don’t care. . . My daughter who is from Ekiti cannot marry Ijebu because. . . whatever etc. But an Igbo man who is from Anambra and another Igbo man who is from Enugu doesn’t care his brother is from another place; all that matters to him is Igbo! The point is I don’t know if some certain towns in Igbo land don’t like each other but the message is, they stand up for each other, they defend each other, there is little or no disparity – the brotherhood is strong.
Flashback to school days as an undergraduate of English Language, I remember people say stuffs like English Students are these, that and so on but the truth is, I couldn’t relate because I was a student of that department and certain things they say about the students doesn’t really fit after trying to juxtapose it with my person!
So, the ‘these, that and so on’ was like for me, I don’t do these things. Then, I heard stuffs like Ife ladies don’t stay long in their husband’s home, Ondo men are womanizers, Egba ladies can do runs, Ijesha men can be very stingy and uncaring, Ondo women are oloshos and they can be lousy. Then, I was like, I’m a proud Egba lady but I don’t do runs, I’m from the English department and I can’t seem to relate to the ‘these, that and so on’ so it was like fallacy but the truth was that, it wasn’t fallacy but it was Stereotyping. Then, I realized that stereotyping is a disease that works with pattern! (gbam!)
This is what I mean. . . Stereotyping started with someone. A certain person saw a particular trait in someone and then unconsciously, he/she began to look out for the same trait in another person and then, boom! He did and then, another person that happened to come from the same area/place as the previous people or a certain person shares his experience and luckily, another person can relate and like that, it spreads and people come up with conclusions that have been handed down from generations to generations and then STEREOTYPING is birthed – a chain of recurring patterns. Judging a whole tribe by the misbehaviours/attitudes of a small member/large member of the tribe – so, not fair!
So, one day or some time ago, I had a nasty-nasty experience with an Ondo babe and trust me, I was so close to conclude that Ondo girls are indeed lousy and could in a minute throw caution to the wind but I couldn’t allow one nasty experience to make me stereotype a whole tribe especially when it comes to their women and Stereotyping is very psychological in the sense that, unconsciously, you begin to take a step back when you mingle with the same sect of people, or you become excessively careful, you turn a guy down, you refuse to marry her even though you like her just because of one nasty experience you, your parents or your fore fathers have had one time or more than once with people from that town, state or area and then, maybe you don’t loose anything at all, or you loose one of the greatest relationship you could have ever had, or you loose one of the best things that could have happened to you because you allowed a fatal experience to decide for you all the time whenever a look alike poses itself.
There are bad people everywhere and maybe you will or have met more bad people in your journey than you’ve seen more good people or maybe unfortunately you’ve met 5 people already that came from the same place and your experience with them was fatal doesn’t mean the 6th or the 7th or the 8th would be like that or maybe they will but a person’s inactions and actions should not be used as a scale to measure the goodness of everybody in that sect.
And I must say, that one of the best friendships that I have made and have grown into what I’d call a sisterhood from another mother is with an Ondo babe from Owo! A good relationship that has blessed, shaped, molded and restored me; one of the best things that’s ever happened to me! And I’ve met Bukky and Bunmi, good people from Akoko, all in Ondo State.
Finally, Stereotyping is more of the bad than the good! Don’t be a trend follower, set your own pace, and follow your own rhythm. Don’t run from A which might be good because you think you are a vampire and you don’t mix with werewolves to the arms of B that is an hybrid and everybody thinks it’s better and okay only for you to be chained without your daylight ring and be exposed to a ton of sun!
I love you guys! And I hope you get the message! Let brotherly love flow. . . that’s the way God wants it.
Byer. . . and don’t stop refreshing this blog!
“The single story creates stereotypes, and the problem with stereotypes is not that they are untrue but that they are incomplete. They make one story become the only story.” ~ Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie