You may not think stereotypes are dangerous. You might think that stereotypes are founded on facts, and so they can even be useful. You might think that they don’t really affect the world in any real way…
But they do.
We are all individuals. Each of us belongs to a certain race, is a certain gender, has a certain sexuality. But these things do not define the entirety of what we are, because we are human beings and each of us is unique.
Stereotypes take this uniqueness away, by grouping people and labelling each group, and reducing each person in that group to that label, so that they are not unique anymore. They allow people to make assumptions about others without knowing them.
And when those stereotypes are ‘Muslims are terrorists’ or ‘Black people are violent,’ then they can cause real, physical harm. They can lead to people insulting questions, people turning away from those who need help, or people actively harming others who have done nothing wrong.
This needs to stop. That is why we are here.