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Oppositions to groups oftentimes marginalize and characterize the opposing side. And the bad thing is that it will, in most cases, define how they will be viewed by outsiders.

For example, how do Republicans characterize Democrats? They are all left wing liberals that want to soak the rich. How do Democrats characterize Republicans? They are all right wingers that don’t care for the environment or the poor. Are these characterizations really representative of the groups? Not really. They only represent a small portion of those groups. What about Libertarians? People think they’re a bunch of nuts that only want to legalize marijuana and prostitution. That's not really all that they stand for either.

Not only are political groups subject to marginalization, but almost all groups are. How are pro-lifers characterized by pro-choicers? How are Southerners characterized by Northerners? How are Catholics characterized by Protestants? How are environmentalists characterized by businesses? How are UGA students characterized by Georgia Tech students? How are atheists characterized by Christians? How are Christians characterized by homosexuals? How are Blacks characterized by Whites? How are Microsoft supporters characterized by Java supporters? The list is endless.

Why is it that that marginalization and characterizations are so enduring? Why do not people try to get past characterizations and try to see people on who they really are, rather than by judging them by a marginal group of people?

Posted: 2004-08-19 17:44:04

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