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Hitting Too Close to Home: A Photo Essay


Millennials are the most racially diverse group in the nation’s history according to a report by Pew Research Center. Only 56 percent of Millennials are white. By 2043, the Census Bureau predicts that the majority of the U.S. population will be non-white. 

Despite the diversity of this generation and the growing diversity of America, the news continues to be filled with stories of prejudice and discrimination. Find out what Ball State students had to say about statements that made them feel detached or unwanted because of their race or appearance.

I've been asked if my family drug deals because I am Mexican.

I’ve been asked if my family drug deals because I am Mexican.
“It made me feel upset that people generalized one group of people. Just because one person does something, doesn’t mean that everyone else is a part of it.” – Isa Escobio

People call me Mexican...I'm Peruvian!

People call me Mexican…I’m Peruvian!
“It was weird, I’m not Mexican. You can’t stereotype every type of race and skin color as Mexican. There are different ethnicities, especially from South America.” – Shirley Aramayo

Terrorist.

Terrorist.
“Since I’m Middle Eastern, I get people asking me if I am a terrorist. Whether they are joking or being serious, it is something that has hurt me. Even though I know who I am and who I am not associated with, people telling me I am a terrorist because I come from a certain part of the world hurts me.” – Khalid Al-Rasheed

I've been told that I would get prego and dropout because I'm Latina.

I’ve been told that I would get pregnant and dropout because I’m Latina.
“Honestly, I didn’t know how to feel at the time. Later on, it pushed me forward to prove them wrong and prove the statistic wrong. It motivated me to better my education and continue on to college.” – Mari Lynne Cruz

You are from Afghanistan, but why are you so light?

You are from Afghanistan, but why are you so light?
“It doesn’t make me feel good. I realized that I didn’t need to focus on what other people think or say. I decided to not care what others say about me.” – Jeena Favloi

You celebrate Black History Month...That's nigger month!

You celebrate Black History Month…That’s nigger month!
“It was one of those moments where I was speechless. When he said that to me I was angered. I’ve never had a situation where I was notified of my race. I know I am Black, I know my race. I took offense to it, I finally felt defensive for my race because I didn’t feel accepted.” – Cierra Hill

You must be good at math.

You must be good at math.
“Having to think about microaggressions I experience day-to-day makes me feel bad. They happen more often than you think and people need to be more aware of them.” – Sophie Gordon

I could be the next Erin Andrews because of the way I look and not because of my skills.

I could be the next Erin Andrews because of the way I look and not because of my skills.
“I have family members that always tell me I can be the next Erin Andrews because of the way I look. It made me uncomfortable because I want to be known for my skills and professionalism. Ball State has grown me into the strong woman I am today, and I want to be known for that. A strong leader, not just another female in the media.” – Meg Falat

A dirty blend that both white and full black don't accept.

A dirty blend that both white and full black don’t accept.
“It made me feel alone and detached from others. In a lot of ways, mixed people aren’t accepted by the other halves. We get people telling us we aren’t black or white. But I’m not either, I’m both. I’ve come to learn I’m the best of both ends and that I’m proud of my ethnicity.” – Kaleb Newell

You speak well.

You speak well.
“It made me feel like people expected me to be uneducated and not intelligent just because I came from a certain background.” – Devante Gaines


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3 Comments

  • Millennials and Culture | Ball Bearings Magazine says: December 7, 2015 at 8:44 am

    […] “Hitting Too Close to Home” a photo essay be Jessika Zachary […]

    Reply
  • Renece T. says: December 7, 2015 at 9:38 pm

    Thank you for raising awareness…many of us Know…Few Acknowledge.

    Reply
    • Jessika Z. says: December 8, 2015 at 3:30 pm

      Thank you for the kind words! I’m happy I could start a conversation about a topic that so many individuals are passionate about!

      Reply

    Leave a Reply to Renece T. Cancel reply