I bear a similar resemblance to the Virginia Tech slaughterer.

While having a peaceful dinner with my roommate in the Stag, a large photograph of Cho Seung-Hui appeared on CNN.

Immediately, three students sitting at a table nearby shifted their attention from the high-definition television to me. The piercing sensations of their glances were blatantly obvious as both my roommate and I noticed their looks in our direction.

I am disappointed to experience, firsthand, the ignorance that breeds on our campus and in our society.

Those who know me know that I try to be as friendly as possible toward everyone. Instead of looking down onto the sidewalk, I try to say, “Hello,” followed by the person’s first name. If there’s a person running toward the door, I try to hold it for them.

That is where the mistake is made. Such stereotypes fuel societal ignorance as some who do not know me assume I am planning diabolical deeds because of my ethnicity.

It is equally unfair to deny those of Middle Eastern descent passage onto an airplane because of the 9/11 tragedy.

It is equally unfair to cast judgment on an African-American when he or she sets foot into a retail store.

The race card should not even be an element of discussion because of actions that select individuals have committed.

The infamous Oklahoma City bomber, Timothy McVeigh, committed his act of domestic terrorism exactly 12 years ago. Why is it that people do not stereotype Caucasian truck drivers driving near day-care centers? Furthermore, why do people feel it is necessary to stereotype those who bear a similar physical appearance to those who have caused harm?

There are Facebook rants where students, the future leaders of the world, publicly bash those bearing an Asian identity. One Facebook user, for example, publicly states in the group “Always Remember Virginia Tech,” “…we should target South Koreans from now on. Do anything bad to them!”

Is this the direction that Western society is veering toward? Why is anything that is socially constructed to be different also labeled as dangerous?

To top things off, students have published the home address of Seung-Hui’s parents; now they may become highly probable victims of hate crimes.

Remember, Seung-Hui is just one of the billions of Asian people living around the world. I am one of those billions of Asian people.

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