Mark, not a real name is a Latino American high school student living in Los Angeles with his parent. Mark's story is about his experience of overt racism in America. In the public places, school, and everywhere Mark feels discriminated against because he is a Latino-American. One day a white woman yelled at mark telling him that he should return to his home country (Mexico) and not spoil America as they did with their country making Mark agitated. Mark finds it hard to make friends with the whites because they are racial and he only has Latino friends. Mark lives in denial in America and admires being white. His friends tell him that he is American first and Mexican second and that his English is perfect. However, Mark feels terrible and says that "I cannot just walk into a room and become white." At the jazz school, an old instructor demands that he plays for him 16 bars but only interrupts, and this makes Mark feel terrible.
My life experience is a little different from Mark's. I am a black American. Many people in America admire me because of my success in school, and my neighbors nicknamed me 'young Obama.' Majority of my friends are white, and they adore me, unlike Mark who has only Latino friends and feels embarrassed being Latino. My teachers as well are the motivation behind my success. For me, I like who I am. These differences in our stories can inspire Mark to accept his origin and avoid living in denial and gain the courage to make friends with the white Americans because fear of discrimination hinders his socialization with the white Americans. However, despite how different our stories are, there are some similarities. I too am a victim of discrimination in America. Being a black boy the whites stereotype me on my background and the type of school I attend. Sometimes they treat me badly. At school, I have to make certain haircuts so that I can look like my friends and dress in a way like my white friends.
I chose this story because it illustrates how it is different for people of different cultures to exist peacefully and because it helps me understand what other people feel about themselves while in another culture and what they think about others. The main similarity in the two stories is that racism is prevalent when an individual lives in another culture like America and if there is a way, as Mark puts it, everyone living in America would transform themselves and become the white Native Americans to escape the negative effects of racism.
There is always something one learns from other persons and listening to their story is one way of learning a lot about life itself. Learning about another person's story provides a rich and dense understanding of why they have different experiences different cultures. Were it that I was in my Black community, I could not be feeling this pain, but because I am in another different culture, I have no choice but to accept the cultural negatives. Mark's story helped me expand my knowledge about why people of one culture do what they do, and why people like Mark struggle to identify themselves with a different culture because they feel it is better than their own and because they want to run from the cultural stereotypes.
Nick Valencia. (2011). My Encounter with Anti-Latino Racism, November 3, 2011. Retrieved from https://edition.cnn.com/2011/09/29/opinion/valencia-racism-latino/index.html on March 25th, 2018.
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Different From Your Own, Free Essay Sample on Racism. (2022, Apr 14). Retrieved from https://speedypaper.net/essays/different-from-your-own
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