The ridiculous assumptions others make about young people

Mutiny Festival 2017 Picture: Paul Windsor

Keep children safe – but beware the nanny state

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I’ve been thinking about stereotypes recently and the ridiculous assumptions people make about young people in particular.

Do you know what? We’re not all bad. In fact, none of us are bad.

But no matter where we stand, what we do or who we’re with, someone will have a stereotypical opinion about us.

I understand that some people have their own opinion about teenagers in Portsmouth. But does it necessarily always have to be negative?

I remember a time I cycled past an elderly lady who made the automatic assumption that I was a thug about to do something unwanted around her. How did I know this? Through her body language and the way she looked at me.

If only they knew personally what I really do and who I represent, then maybe they’d think differently.

Sadly, we will never be able to prevent stereotypes. But as young people we can try and restrict the negativity and replace it with positive opinions.

Aim to do a good deed for someone each day or engage with the community. Stand up and make a difference to society.

We can engage with the community by volunteering and helping people. I understand this may not be your cup of tea (or coffee if you don’t like tea). But think how rewarding it could be.

Any form of engagement young people have in the community is guaranteed to make our lives bigger, better and brighter forever.