If it bleeds ink, it's not a person.Merfolk is a name for Sirenians that visually resemble humans the most and have decided to live on land instead of in the ocean. Depending on their ancestry and how long ago it was they settled on land, they have developed different coping mechanisms to assimilate themselves into human society or founded their own towns and smaller settlements, which has strongly effected their culture and customs. In bigger cities and ports, however, they tend to be ostracised, forced to live in ghettos, secluded from other "normal" people. In recent decades even their smaller villages are not safe from pogroms and violence. There are many deeply rooted prejudices that drive such animosity. Firstly, they are seen as a competition to "honest sailor men" who are simply not as good at sailing or fishing or any other marine discipline of their choice, only because merfolk are stealing their opportunities. Then, a lot of merfolk do not speak or have difficulty pronouncing words. That does not only make it that harder to defend themselves and their culture from ignorant people, but also perpetuates the idea that they have mental defects and are therefore inferior to humans. Another reason is that they come from the dark waters of the ocean and nothing good ever comes from the darkness. The less colourful merfolk is, the more is it likely that they will be accused of being a demon or having a demon parentage. Certain priests like to target merfolk this way especially. And most recently, the outbreaks of Siren's Kiss are blamed on them and their real or potential unions with humans.
Common Customs, traditions and rituals
Body painting is their favourite thing ever, no matter gender or age. Colours are everywhere.