I'm basically making this post, because of events that have happened to me recently. As you all know, I consider myself an otaku. Yes, I go outside, but I consider myself an otaku. I'm aware that this isn't the "textbook" definition , but I define the word in a different way compared to everyone else.
I've done many posts on what it means to be otaku. I've examined the myth of deciding between anime or success, the stereotypes that otaku face, and other things. Although I've been talking about them, I haven't always been the one in the line of fire when it comes to discrimination.
However, today I was faced with it directly. Not only that, it came from a teacher of all people. It was appalling to think that someone could basically sit in front of the class and label a group of people as inferior due to something as simple as their interests. It seemed so wrong, it made me angry, and I felt horrible. I could feel it building up inside of me, but all I could really do was sit there.
I don't think anyone should ever have to experience that feeling.
It was insane, someone was labeling me and everyone else who fell into the "group," as having something wrong with them. There is nothing wrong with me, and there is nothing wrong with most otaku. We cannot point at a group and say that they need to be fixed. We cannot tell people what they should and should not do. People have to make their own decisions, but they shouldn't be looked down for what they decide.
Sadly, it doesn't seem like people realize this. They don't notice the fact that even though no one says anything, they are not all in agreement. They don't understand that their words may be hurtful to others. Or they may be aware and just not care. They don't realize the effect a simple statement can have on a person.
So even though people may look down on us, call us nerds, geeks, otaku, or whatever other hurtful term they can think of...we are strong. By embracing ourselves we can persevere through such experiences.
Otaku do not always have it easy, as being a deviant in society is not a simple feat. Being one of the few to have the courage to express themselves is not a simple feat. If anything, we might be more courageous and understanding than anyone else. When will people realize this?