Who is normal?

May 08, 2007|by BRIANNA GREEN


Adults think that school is all about learning and getting ready for life, but kids know better: Attending middle school and high school is all about trying to be normal and fit into the right group.

In school, stereotyping is used a lot because everyone has their cliques. People join like-minded people. We hang with people we like and not with people we don't. I do it. You do it. It's what humans do. That's normal.

One of the most important things to do in school is figure out who is OK and who is not. One way to figure out other people is by checking out their clothing style, choice of music and activities.


Basic stereotypes

The most basic stereotypes in high school are goths, punks, emo types, preppies, gangsters and jocks.

Emo kids are typically over-emotive, sometimes overdramatic, and some people assume that emos cut themselves. That's not true. Emos can feel depressed without hurting themselves.

Goths usually wear black clothing, such as TRIPP jeans with chains on them. They are also known for wearing skulls on their clothing. People assume they aren't active, that they mope around all the time and listen to head-banging music. Goths have built up a rep of being scary and hateful, but the goths I know are fun and outgoing. They just like to dress differently.

Jocks are athletes. They travel together and some can be bullies to the nerds and geeks. People don't dare stand up them because are jocks are considered strong. If you're going to fear high school jocks, why like famous ones? If playing a sport makes people scary, then I'm terrified of David Beckham.

When I hear the word prep, I think cheerleader. (Obviously, that's me stereotyping.) They usually wear brands such as Hollister and Aeropostale. Preps are known for saying things like "Oh, my god!" and "totally" and not speaking to nonpreps. But the preps I know don't really fit the stereotype. The stereotypical prep likes to wear bright colors such as pink. They listen to music such as country and pop. Also, some people believe that preps and jocks are always together. They aren't.

Gangstas wear baggy clothes and rapper shirts. They listen to hip-hop, R&B and rap. People think that all gangstas are in gangs and carry weapons. Also, that gangstas are black, but if you watch movies such as "The Godfather" the gangsters are Italian. They act big and bad but are kind to people who give them a chance.

Appearances can deceive

So who is "normal"? Who is OK? Everyone has their definition of the word. People in a clique look normal to each other. But that's a narrow definition. It's insulting is to believe that your own group is OK and all others are stupid, snobby or dorky, or are at the bottom of the school food chain.

Accept people for who they are on the inside not what they wear or how they act or the gender of the person they date. A lot people don't open their minds to the possibilities of this world and are afraid to be different. They're afraid to be themselves.

It's OK to speak your mind. Just say what you want to say. It's OK to be different and like a variety of fashion styles and music. It's OK to be yourself and not worry what other people think of you.

So the next time you notice you are stereotyping, stop. Think about it. Do you want people to judge you?

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