Muffinnz

General Why are we this way?

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Why is it that when someone says they are a brony or like mlp the other person immediately presumes they are overweight, no life, aren't as intelligent or have a lack of skills? Most of the time this isn't true. 

Edited by Muffinnz

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There is a thing called stereotypes and that is usually the stereotype for a person who likes Ponies and is out of the age demographic.

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Well I AM overweight, but the others are false. XD

Like TaZe said, it’s just stereotypes. If you decide you don’t like or disagree with someone, it’s easier to see yourself as superior if you belittle them. Helps dehumanize them and makes being cruel easier.

It is an unfortunate pattern of behavior in human beings that needs to be monitored and practiced against.

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Assuming that you are not asking this rhetorically, we are this way because we started walking upright and our brains started growing and became able to form new neural connections. These new connections eventually gave us the most important trait In our species, the ability to recognize patterns. This is the proto origin of all bias, and why no matter how hard one tries to use cognitions to render bias irrelevant, they will always exist. As long as they exist, we will frame our view of people and groups as ultimately one, at least at first. You see, you can't circumvent bias, you can discover it and then face it, but that comes after pattern recognition based functions. Things like empathy and social cues come into focus after patterns, which are put together without us even thinking. 

I could sit here and talk about rainbows and sunshine, but that isn't what our species is about at this point in our evolution as we still need that short hand pattern recognition to thrive, and it continues to be passed down genetically. 

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And before this it was Star Wars fans. Before that it was D&D players. Before that it was Star Trek fans. Before that it was... chess players?

The neck-bearded virgin living in the parents' basement. It just keeps jumping from one group to another after the previous group becomes acceptable.

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Some people are just judgmental. I am definitely not overweight and in all the years I've been a brony, I have never treated MLP as anything more than a hobby. I've also only ever had to deal with one guy insulting me for being an MLP fan, so it all depends on the kind of crowd you go to. 

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IMO stereotypes usually have some basis in truth, even if that basis was a long time ago or because the experience was limited. While a lot of people watch anime or MLP, the "nerds" are probably more likely to watch them, along with Star Trek, Star Wars etc. However, those types of people are probably also more likely to advertise that they watch such shows. I watch SciFi shows and MLP, but I don't go around telling everyone that I do (if someone asks, I'll answer honestly, I just do not think I need to tell everybody about it), I don't go around cosplaying as a Starfleet member, do not have a picture of Twilight on my car etc. Even though I would fit the "nerd" category. If you know me personally, you will most likely know that I like ponies. But if you see me on the street, you won't.

So, if someone is not interested in these shows, what is he likely to see? Nerds dressed up in Starfleet uniforms, etc. And thus, the stereotype is born.

There are other stereotypes too, like soldiers being all manly and only liking "manly" things, like sports, cars, guns and beer (and probably a lot of them do like those things). To find out that a soldier likes a show for little girls would be strange as it violates multiple stereotypes.

Another possible reason is the wish for people to only have two categories - "normal" and "weird". So, liking things that you are supposed to like is "normal" liking something else is "weird". And all "weird" things belong in the same place, so if you are weird in one way, you are probably weird in other ways too. 

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It's stereotyping. People do this when they perceive someone as 'different'. Same things happen with the various races on Earth. It disgusts me, but there's no getting around it. Some people will be prejudiced against MLP no matter what you say or do.

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Just now, Fiendstorm said:

It disgusts me, but there's no getting around it.

Just remember that:

1. People are wired to recognize patterns, be that seeing a face when seeing a couple of lines or being bad at probabilities.

2. Stereotypes usually have some reason in them other than "I don't like them, so I'll invent lies about them", that reason may be very weak or wrong, but there usually is.

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3 hours ago, Muffinnz said:

Why is it that when someone says they are a brony or like mlp the other person immediately presumes they are overweight, no life, aren't as intelligent or have a lack of skills? Most of the time this isn't true. 

People will find ways to demonize something they don't like. It just so happens that the way people demonize bronies is by calling them names and making up stereotypes. It's not something that will really bother you (unless you let it), so I recommend just shaking your head in mild amusement at these people.

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Simple answer: Humanity is stupid. We live in the era of the "internet coward" where anyone can say almost anything they want without reprimand. Even what I just said could fall under that. It is basically humanwide narcissism now. Everyone thinks they are better than everyone else and they will pull any reason to support that mindset.

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I guess because it's just the stereotype? I don't know. 

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OMG a topic like this has such an effect of bringing us bronies together somehow. If this post was made in public in 2011, we would have had so many new people joining the bronies. It is something about being unique and recognize that as a good thing. Of course we would also have a lot of haters, and many of them would point at us and use words like overweight, no life, aren't as intelligent or have a lack of skills.

What can I say, other than I agree with all of you here! The only difference is time, as the longer we are calling ourselves bronies, we are actually proving to not be that stereotype, but rather just a group who still are interested in MLP and ponies. It is actually not as existing and new as it used to be. Rather "normal" for today's standards when I think about it.

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The haters are strange to me. 

I personally dislike quite a few things, but I usually just ignore them, instead of joining a forum dedicated to the thing I dislike just to bash its fans and get into conflicts. Especially if it's just a TV show or a movie or something else that does not affect me in any way. 

Now, if such a topic comes up in some other forum, I may participate in it, if I have strong opinions on the matter. The difference is that if the forum is not directly related to the thing we may have an actual discussion (people from both sides hopefully having a civilized discussion) instead of me vs everyone else, because I went to the place where everyone has a different opinion from mine.

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8 hours ago, BornAgainBrony said:

And before this it was Star Wars fans. Before that it was D&D players. Before that it was Star Trek fans. Before that it was... chess players?

The neck-bearded virgin living in the parents' basement. It just keeps jumping from one group to another after the previous group becomes acceptable.

Does that mean one day we will be acceptable :kirin:?

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People usually find out from me in person, and that's after we've known each other for a bit. This isn't because I'm worried as to how they'll react, but there isn't much reason for me to bring it up, so I don't think anyone's ever gotten to make that assumption with me. It helps that what little means of talking to people online I use, it tends to be places that are friendly towards the fandom or just don't care because we've been around for so long now.

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To be honest, I bet most of these making fun of bronies never met one IRL or wondered there if it makes them any different.

It is merely a single trait and characteristic, and does not make a single person. It is just alienating for some people, that's all.

I can tell you, independent of which group, there will be always people with bad attitudes, be it brony, star wars or cars (car wars?).

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11 hours ago, Steve Piranha said:

Does that mean one day we will be acceptable :kirin:?

We already are to a degree. I think a lot of it depends on locale though. My car is cutie-marked, lots of my shirts have ponies on them. Of anyone who has interacted with me, it's been mostly positive. The only two examples that weren't, go figure were both girls. One of them was just playfully ribbing and I never got any bad vibe off it. The other, "You do realize you're a grown man, right?" Two other people in the room reacted to that comment when it happened and suddenly she was outnumbered. I'm in an interesting place. Go a few miles one way and you're in conservative farm country. Go the other, and you're mostly around people who commute to NYC. Everybody comes here though because it's touristy, so take that for what you will.

It'll be interesting to see how/if this changes when I move.

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If it's nerdy to like cool shows and have intelligence to appreciate something beyond surface appearances, I'm happy to be a nerd. I may not fit the stereotypes but I like anything beyond the fringes of the common crowd who can't like anything unless it's popular to do so among their peers.

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On 9/9/2019 at 10:44 PM, Jeric said:

Assuming that you are not asking this rhetorically, we are this way because we started walking upright and our brains started growing and became able to form new neural connections. These new connections eventually gave us the most important trait In our species, the ability to recognize patterns. This is the proto origin of all bias, and why no matter how hard one tries to use cognitions to render bias irrelevant, they will always exist. As long as they exist, we will frame our view of people and groups as ultimately one, at least at first. You see, you can't circumvent bias, you can discover it and then face it, but that comes after pattern recognition based functions. Things like empathy and social cues come into focus after patterns, which are put together without us even thinking. 

I could sit here and talk about rainbows and sunshine, but that isn't what our species is about at this point in our evolution as we still need that short hand pattern recognition to thrive, and it continues to be passed down genetically. 

Well said. More simply, George Carlin defined us (humanity) as "semi-civilized animals with baseball caps and automatic weapons," which was pretty much on the nose. Our species still has a long way to go.

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Most stereotypes are vaguely rooted in some form of truth. Because, let's be real, there have been plenty of people in the fandom who fit that description perfectly. And, of course, plenty who don't. I might be overweight, but I'm intelligent and have plenty of skills. Couldn't start a career in IT if I didn't.

As time goes on, the stereotypes become less and less true however... to the point that they're functionally meaningless pejoratives.

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Cause people like to make generalizations. They also like to think all Bronies are males even though there are plenty of female ones too.

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Um... We aren’t this way, though.

When it comes down to it, it’s all stereotypes. Are there some people in the fandom that fall into the stereotypes? Sure. However, that’s not the majority. It’s improper examples that have helped cause these said stereotypes. 

 

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