If you are a woman, you would have definitely heard it at least once in your life, “You could spend hours on shopping and never get tired.” If you are a man, you would have heard from your counterpart, “You can watch sports channel the entire day.” Now what is with the rule of generalization, just because many women like shopping, it does not imply all women would and none of the men will? If a man likes to shop, it does not make him less of a man or if a woman is glued to sports channel for hours, it does not give her manly traits.
Why do we generalize everything in our daily routine? If a driver ahead of you steers the car to the left or right suddenly, many of you men sigh, “Must be a woman!” Do not criticize a woman’s driving skills just because you had a bad experience with another one. As if all men are most skilled drivers!? Similarly aren’t you men tired of hearing “Do not involve your male ego in this?” If a single, few or even many men have strong egos, it is not necessary that “all” men do! Why do we take few examples from our life and convert them into a general rule. In statistics terms, it involves the basic error of sampling; the sample is so small that it does not correctly represent the population. Not all men are rapists and not all women are emotional fools.
It is not just the battle of sexes. Such rules have been framed for any aspect possible. Within Delhi, South Delhi people are considered to have an attitude problem. Within India, people in South have the perception that North Indians are snobbish. Outside India, people think Indians can’t speak English or that major parts of the country are filthy. Phew! Generalizations and over generalizations, is it because we judge too quickly?
Remember the movie, My Name Is Khan, and the brilliant dialogue that SRK pulled ardently, “My name is Khan and I am not a terrorist.” That was one strong message. Everything from actions, sexes, regions, countries to religion is generalized. I understand we perceive what is visible around us, but just because it is true for a “small part”, it may not hold valid for “All”. I can only say, let us be less judgmental and more open minded.