Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Xenophobia: The Fear of Strangers or Foreigners

The StrangersXenophobia is the persistent and abnormal fear of strangers or foreigners.  Xenophobia has been around for centuries.  People will argue that it’s not the same as racism, but it kind of sounds that way. If you fear and dislike a person because of where they come from, then you’re racist, right? 

We have seen this a lot in the United States since 9/11.  Everyone seems to cringe every time they see someone of Arabic descent in their town or on the same plane as them.  It’s hard to trust them because of everything that has happened, but we have to remember that Americans have turned their back on us to and tried to destroy our country.  You can’t judge a book by its cover.

A phobia is a strong, persistent fear of situations, objects, activities or persons.  The main symptom is an excessive and unreasonable desire to avoid the feared subject. Other phobia symptoms include shortness of breath, irregular heartbeat, sweating, nausea, and an overall feeling of dread.  Phobias are the most common form of anxiety disorders.

Do you suffer from Xenophobia?  Please share your story.  How was it triggered and how does it affect your life?


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