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Take your stereotypes and…

by VM Brasseur on February 28th, 2008

I live in what is often called an “urban” neighborhood. In common parlance the word “urban” usually translates to “black” or, if you’re feeling very politically correct, “African-American.” When I first moved in here a few people I know expressed their concern for my safety because, well, I’m in the hood and therefore must be in mortal peril. Um, right…

There’s a new neighbor who recently moved into the house across the street and one door down from my own. He’s a young, black male. He owns three pit bulls. We (the five of us) met today.

The young, black male? He’s quiet, polite and well-spoken. In the past, before we’d officially met, he’d see me walking from my car to my door and say, “Good evening, neighbor!” and wave and smile a big sincere smile.

The dogs? Adorable puppy-like little (OK, big) critters. They frolic and wrestle with each other and lick your hands and love to have their ears scritched. Aside from being beautiful creatures they are, by a very long shot, much quieter than the obnoxious little kick dog owned by the family two doors down. I’m looking forward to another opportunity to play with the big puppies.

So, hey, you can go ahead and take your stereotype of pitbull-owning young, black males and stuff it. Yes, there are bad examples of the genre but you can’t let that define all of them. Judge each for his own qualities (and that goes for the dogs, too).

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