Why are we so frightened of those who are different? Why are so many angry at others who don’t look exactly like them, who don’t speak the same language, who aren’t the same sex, shape, size, color, or religion?
Are people so insecure that they must put others down for being different in order to feel good about themselves?
When did being different automatically become being wrong?
Two women attack a mother/daughter for speaking Spanish.
A Black man is gunned down in circumstances where a White man likely wouldn’t be.
A politician mocks someone with a physical disability, as those around him cheer and laugh.
This goes beyond civility, in my mind. This seems to say that various splinter groups think they have the only moral ground, the only high ground, the only way that life must be lived. And everyone else is wrong, wrong, WRONG.
And the saddest part? When one of a group is mocked by members because he’s not seen as “right” enough.
I just read a short excerpt (from his full column) written by Tim Teeman in The Week, a weekly magazine, on the attacks from many gays against former presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg. Since I’m not gay, I hadn’t focused on where many of the attacks were coming from. I probably wouldn’t have voted for Buttigieg, but that’s not the point. For me, his being gay meant nothing, other than he had a lot of courage knowing he’d be targeted.
But I wonder if he expected to be targeted by others whose lives are similar to his. Who live a life that so many scorn. Who have known first-hand the prejudice of being different, especially when they “came out.”
Teeman reports that “…it was fellow gays who were most openly critical of Buttigieg, scorning him as ‘too guarded,’ ‘too nerdy,’ and ‘too eager to please heterosexuals.’ ”
That just seems so sad to me. I guess I wouldn’t have expected others who live his life to be upset because he wasn’t exactly like them. Not liking his policies would be one thing; not liking him because he wasn’t exactly their version of gay is another.
All in all, I wasn’t excited about Buttigieg as a possible presidential candidate, but I surely do applaud his courage. Give the guy credit, as he’s knocked down another barrier to our seeing someone as different yet also as perfectly fine.
What are your thoughts on this? I welcome seeing them on this or any other similar issue through your lens.