Hey, just want to share my experience with you all...
I attended a program called xenophobia. The word xenophobia means fear of a stranger. A stranger could be anyone different than what you are used to being around. An example is a Muslim, Hispanic, a homosexual, or a Korean person.
The program was very enlightening. I learned terms that are offensive to other ethnics such as chink, jihad or towel head. A chink is an offensive term towards the Chinese. This word is considered racist. The word jihad means inner struggle, but many people flip the definition around and claim that it means holy war.
The term towel head is also offensive because Muslim people are clearly not wearing towels on their head it is called a Hijaab. The Muslim young lady on the panel explained this to everyone.
There was also a homosexual man on the panel during the xenophobia discussion. He explained to everyone that his is still a man. He likes to fish, drink beer and essentially be manly. But many people believe that because he is gay that he must act like a woman. The young man also explained to us that he cannot be recognized as married in some parts of the United States.
There were also Hispanic individuals on the panel. They explain to us the hardship of crossing the boarder, getting documentation, and even their driverÔ??s license. Many people have died on the long voyage to make it to the United States, going through underground tunnels with no ventilation.
And once the surviving few make it to the United States it takes years to become established. The Hispanic young ladies on the panel also told us about the risk and fear of deportation and the difficulty of learning English while still retaining Spanish.
The presentation was excellent and very informative. By participating in this program I now know the correct terms to use when referring to someone other than African American.
I also know what words are offensive to others. I now see that Muslims are just like you and me, they are regular people. And the next time I am around someone new I will not be afraid to open up and talk to them.