Every day on Channel 4 at 7.55pm, you can find 4Thought, a short film about a particular topic. Each week sees a new topic that the films present a series of perspectives on. "Why hate me for the way I look?" is the title of this weeks 4Thought series.
You can watch all the "Why hate me for the way I look?" films HERE
It was thanks to the tweets of the Sophie Lancaster Foundation that I found out about this week's theme, as not living in the UK anymore means I miss out on stuff if I'm not careful! All of the films are thought provoking, but Gena Buchan's story brough tears to my eyes. All the people featured in these film have experienced hate as a result of the way they look, three of the participants are from alternative subcultures, one is a Sikh and the other suffers from Cherubism.
I'm consider myself fortunate that the worst I have been subjected is the odd shout of "Greebo" from dumb ass teenagers in Plymouth or Exeter. I know people who have experienced worse. Since moving to Vienna I get the odd look, but the attitude here is much more accepting of sub cultures (race and religion can be another matter though). I think it is in part because it is a large city, partly because it is an incredibly diverse city and also because it is a pretty cool place to live, with a vibrant culture.
Enough of my rambling, go and watch the films, and spread the word. Honestly, the best way to reduce the amount of hate directed at people because of the way they look is to talk, educate and explain, over and over and over again if necessary. Start dialogues, politely. Invite people to ask questions. Most of all, be proud of who you are (and be nice and polite with it), and be true to yourself.