Dirty Carnies and Other Horrible Stereotypes

I believe that stereotypes, even though very hurtful at the time, can shape a person into who they are today.

For sixteen years, I have been subjected to harsh criticism because of my family business, a carnival business. Getting comments from passing families, as I, even as a young girl worked the microphone on my family’s radar baseball game, called the Speedball. It became a daily tradition to have at least one rude remark.

One sunny afternoon, when I was about eight years old, my older sister Brandee and I were working our game at the Iowa State Fair. A passing teenager with his mother, looked right at me and said, “Look mom, they have dirty baby carnies working now.” I looked down at myself, and seen not a speck of dirt on my whole body. I told my sister, “I think they were dirtier than both of us.” She laughed and told me to just ignore it. Well, needless to say, it’s hard to do at that age.

Another experience that stands out to me the most, happened about a year and a half ago. I was working in my food stand and we had tip jars that said “college fund” on them. A man walked up and ordered some food, and was kind of a reserved man at first. After I made him his food and told him the price, he looked at the tip jar and started laughing. I probably gave him a dirty look that sparked a rude comment. He ignorantly said, “That’s funny, a carnie going to college? No way, that money is probably just for drugs.” Although I was old enough for that not to bother me, it still did because I know that I’m above that.

Stereotyping is just something natural that people start to think about based on their parent’s beliefs and the other people around them. Although I have been subjected to the ignorance of stereotyping, I have learned that every time somebody makes a stupid comment, I shouldn’t let it bother me. Instead I should let it drive me towards excellence in everything I do, and go to college.

Stereotyping, this I believe, has made me the strong, educated person I am today.





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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

Inkblot88 said...
Oct. 5, 2011 at 8:45 pm
If only we could rid the world of such ignorance! I love your article and can relate to it well myself! Keep on keeping on!
 
andreahuston88 replied...
Oct. 5, 2011 at 9:11 pm
Thank you so much! I just wish more people could see that yes I'm a carnie but I'm also more than that.. I'm not a druggie I'm a 16 year old girl who has hopes and dreams and is in 2 AP classes! Thanks again!!
 
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