Prejudice is judging people based on how they look, their religion, or their gender. Stereotyping is making a generalization about a group of people. For example, all blondes are dumb, or all Americans are lazy and arrogant, or all people in England have bad teeth. There are also far more offensive stereotypes than these.
Prejudice and stereotyping are caused because people are ignorant. They aren’t educated in other people’s cultures. For example, many people judge others based on the color of their skin. But if they learned a bit more about their culture and people, they would realize that they aren’t that different. Or if people from other countries learned more about Americans and their culture, they might not think that all Americans are lazy and arrogant. Prejudice and stereotyping are just two different forms of bullying.
How do we enact the solution to prejudice and stereotyping? Well, there are many ways to get people educated on other cultures. For example, schools could have classes in which students discuss other cultures and lifestyles.
See? It’s simple! You can take action today by spreading the word or talking to your principal about learning about other cultures, or simply by getting to know someone before you judge him or her. Judging people without getting to know them and acting badly about them because you are prejudiced or biased is bullying. So, be a buddy, not a bully!
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Izzy, Scholastic Kids Council