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Where are you from?

In the States, looking different and/or having an accent will get you asked “Where are you from?” It doesn’t fail, it happens all the time.

Why are we so concerned about knowing someone’s country of origin? What difference does it make? If anything, it might be a knowledge we do not want to have. Knowing from where someone is from might spark stereotypical comments and behaviors that would jeopardize an otherwise perfect encounter.

“I know these questions often come from well meaning places, but sometimes I wish we could just get rid of them entirely, much like the racial identifier question on job and school applications.”

My least favourite question: where are you from?

Where am I from? No where, I have no place to call home. Earth, perhaps? Or simply American. That should do it.