City College Times

Fear or Phobia


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Is it legitimate or an illusion?

By James Hartley
Times Staff

Fear is an unpleasant emotion caused by the threat of danger, pain or harm. It is an emotion induced by a threat perceived, which causes a change in brain and organ function and ultimately a change in behavior from traumatic events.
A phobia is an extreme or irrational fear of something. A person will take something and perceive it as a threat even though it probably will not harm them.
These days, I feel I am seeing more phobias than actual fears, but no one is being called on them because society allows inappropriate reactions to things people are scared of or not comfortable with.
Not only do I see this in schools, but also in the work place and in public space as well.self-help-for-phobias-and-fears-3-638
Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump said in a speech that America should stop allowing Muslims to come to America until the government figures out “what’s going on,” after the shooting in San Bernardino where 14 people were killed by a couple who happened to be Muslims.
Trump took what those two individuals did and placed the blame on the whole Muslim community.
People do violent things, such as shootings and robberies, every day in America. Why does Trump feel he has to keep a whole religion from coming to American-soil based on a single situation?
Coming from an inner city community like East Palo Alto, when someone says they fear me, it makes me feel like a monster and truthfully it angers me.
Someone saying they fear you because of what you look like or where you are from is unacceptable.
What gives strangers the right to act out on their fears in a way that affects the person they fear simply because of how he or she dresses, speaks or even walks?
I think people use the word fear in order to gain an advantage in certain situations.
For example, if a person says he or she is in fear of someone, others may follow and accuse the “suspect” of being what the stereotypes lead them to believe.
If a phobia is the cause for that person’s fear then who is to blame? One person’s freedom should not be stopped because another person says they fear them.
Every fear does not call for an action.
For example, if a person has a phobia of spiders, it does not mean that person needs to go out and kill all the spiders in the world because of the possibility it might harm them.

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Fear or Phobia