During the travel from St. Louis to Detroit I was given an opportunity to face one of my own stereotypes. After spending a day talking about stereotypes to teenagers, fate decided that I needed a dose of walking the walk. At the airport there were a group of young men in baggy clothing (and the kind of tank tops that have become associated by name with domestic abuse) being highly rambunctious. Needless to say that without thinking about it, they were grouped into a mental stereotype and I didn’t think twice. However, upon boarding the plane the stewardess called for all active military personal and veterans to board the plane and they all stood up. My mind was blown to realize that these men did not neatly fit into a stereotype based on how they dressed. These are people that have risked their lives on a daily basis to protect a country they believe in.
Sometimes changing your daily patterns come naturally, sometimes you need something to slap you upside the head to see what is going on around you and challenge you to something new. That is what this experience was for me, and I look forward to how this summer will continue to challenge me to shift my perspectives and challenge myself.