by Mary Agnes Motril a.k.a. Gabie

Germans are cold and direct. Russians are always angry. Italians are all pasta and noise. Filipinos are nothing more than Asians born from Spanish colonialism. These are all stereotypes – a misconception formed from the various views of the history of a certain country or bloodline. It is a misunderstanding we would bear for most of our lives for we are born in a world that never seems to get past the shallow first impression that is stereotype.

Sadly, we often forget that people are more than sayings and rumors. Humans are born different – each with their own beauty and smile. One can be the loudest person in the room and still belong to a conservative and quiet race. One can be everything other than what one think and yet he or she still remains proud of the country he or she has been born with. Indeed, a person is worth more than the stereotype. However, having to break the chains that shackle you to an image you do not uphold means getting to know the “individuality” of the person. Thus, this includes understanding his or her being human regardless of the country he or she is in, the color of his or her skin, the accents he or she speaks, or even the norms he or she believes in. Definitely, acceptance of diversity is key.

Citizenship must not be isolated to mere uniformity. Not all members of the same race are exactly the same. A person will always be more than what you think they are. Thus, nationalities of people must not be seen only in one angle. Germans are not just cold people, they are punctual and rule oriented. Russians are not angry people, they are festive and hospitable people. Italians are not just food lovers, but they are also friendly neighbors. Filipinos are not just largely Spanish centered, but they are well round people who are resilient and flexible. However, regardless of these traits what matters the most is that “we are all humans” . We deserve the same treatment one receives from the other. We deserve to be treated with respect and with consideration to ones dignity and individuality. Thus, one must understand simply that our humanity is responsible for the breaking of worldly stereotypes making us “equally humans”.