Sunday, September 25, 2011


labels. we give them to everyone. the tall one, the short one. the funny one. the fugly one (!). the fat one. the hot one. the creepy disgusting nerdy one. the lone black dude. the white nerd. the asian geek.

Labels tend to be an easy, convenient method for shelving people into parts of our (seemingly organized) brains. Evolution, single-serving, 1st impressions, call it what you will, but no matter how PC we try to make ourselves (Politically Correct lah), we tend to just stick to the big picture. It's easier. Saves time.

Labels: is it fair though? Well, it all depends. Is it racial stereotyping? Do we automatically assume that just because a person is black that he likes fried chicken? Or that a Chinese fellow is good in math? Or an indian person loves spicy food? Or a malay person is much more brand-conscious? Is it fair to label someone according to race group by traits that supposedly these people are genetically prepositioned to have?

Labels, again is it fair to use them on everyday people, by just calling someone the funny man just because he is full of jokes and always expecting him to entertain you. All. The. Time. Or is it fair to use labels to mark the quiet person as anti-social, anti-party, anti-conversation and just ignore them, giving them their own space and automatically assuming they wont want to come? Again it all depends. Are these labels fair? Do these people go out of their way to make themselves the loudest in the group? the funniest? Do they primp and style themselves to make themselves stand out? or do they just stand in a corner, ignoring advances?

Labels are fundamentally human, we are evolved to constantly spot patterns and judge as such, these help us make decisions, but unfortunately this makes us prone to jumping to conclusions. Behind each label we assign, there is a human being, full of complex emotions; a personality enigma that will probably take us a lifetime to understand, and even more so, because honestly, deep down, who really understands themselves? But on the other end of the spectrum, do we even have time to try and understand every single person we come across in life?

Labels. Fair? you be the judge

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