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LatinitasMagazine.org - A Strong Voice for Latina Youth

Roaming the halls of a high school set in the middle of suburbia, it's easy to stand out among the flowing wave of normality and regularity. The surprise individual, the one that stands out because of the hijab they wear, the color of their skin, the bright freckles on their face, their neon dresses, the holes in their clothing, their painted face, and the bright, dangerous red they've colored their hair with drowns and sinks into the waves of "normal" like an anchor. One that will not be lifted until enough rust is on it so that it is unrecognizable. That is what it's like to be judged for how you look. To be met with such sinking feelings brought on by others that you feel you must hide and run away until you're "normal" until you fit in with what's "popular". As human beings, we all share a flaw that has become tragic to our own special being. Rather than celebrating or trying to find perspective in what we do not understand, what we do not feel comfortable with, what we feel is wrong or uneasy, we push it away. We judge whatever it is that makes us nervous, whatever it is that causes the knot in our stomach or our eyes to dart away because we're too scared to face it. Judging someone because of a scarf they might wear to cover their hair is done because the individual does not understand why. They do not understand the purpose of the scarf or the meaning, but what they're forgetting is that it's not about understanding the scarf itself, it's about understanding the person wearing the scarf. Seeing someone for who they are to be able to face what hinders our view. We forget that people are people and begin categorizing them by how they look and miss an opportunity for connection. Judging someone for the way they look is bound to happen. As much as we try to avert our eyes and think pleasantly, we are met with a human quirk we must all work to shake. See skin color, a hijab, braces, acne, clothing you mad deem unwearable and embrace it. Embrace the person you've forgotten under your careless and tragic judgement only then can we advance and evolve together as humans. We can learn, we can grow, and we can work towards ending things like racism, sexism, and classicism. Next time you feel your head growing hot with judgement, remember that by judging you are not only limiting yourself to a human connection, but you're participating in the growth of something like bullying, even if you don't mean to. 

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Tags: bullying, judgement

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