Recently, I said the following to a client, “We are all wounded.” On later reflection, I realized I had not used the word in a long time, probably replacing it with other synonyms. Thinking about writing this article, I thought it was essential to return to it.
Many people are out there commiserating about the sins of the past, some crimes against humanity. Sadly, being human, these atrocities continue to occur in many parts of the world. Yes, some will not like this, in more places than others. What can we do? Although we are all wounded, some are aware that we must continue to fight for what is just, especially those of us living comfortably in the confines of North America and parts of Europe. How do we do this? Well, one way is not defiling those who think differently and shout them down with dangerous or demeaning labels. Doing this in our current climate can damage a person for years, perhaps into perpetuity.
I always include me as being a part of the wounded with gaping holes myself. Although I am quite flawed, being elitist has never even remotely been applied to me. I have never seen myself above others, nor should I. Celebrating always the uniqueness of each human being, we share stark realities, including our mortality, like it or not. Also, most of us have the blessings of two lungs, a heart even if some are heartless, metaphorically speaking, a brain, two kidneys, and, well, you get the point.
Many people do not recognize their wounds. If they do, these people view themselves as less flawed than others.
I concur if they compare themselves to murderers, rapists, perpetrators of physical and sexual abuse of children and animal cruelty, and those who try to destroy another human being. Throwing “thou shall not steal” in the ring could be plausible. Although it is not right, however, this action is more nuanced. When you murder, there is no gradation.
In the last week, I read a superb article. The author caught my attention after reading a lovely comment they left under another written piece. Because my cup runneth over, I do not usually leave responses, but I felt compelled to do so as the author’s masterfully crafted writing deserved accolades. I was not alone in recognizing the superiority of this article. Not to my surprise, however, one of the commenters could not help themselves and made a disparaging comment about people with whom they disagree. The commenter cloaked their condescending analysis in intellectual jargon but managed to convey their vitriol toward those people who view the world through a different lens. This person believes that something is amiss with these individuals. Oh my!
Before I continue, I appreciate the anonymity of using the pronouns “they and their” in this article since there appears to be such an emphasis on pronouns these days. I prefer to protect the commenter as much as possible. You might wonder that I think, “They know not what they do.” Well, being quite wounded myself, I do not invoke that phrase from my faith even if some believe it is right about this person. I emphatically say that the commenter knows precisely what they are doing as they pen their elitist perspective. The article’s author graciously acknowledged the commenter’s response but deftly reminded them that this is not limited to those referenced in the comment.
Today’s theme brings me to another few articles I have read where the author, an expert in their profession, also used groupings of people who might see the world differently. At times, the author insinuated that these particular people fall under the umbrella of specific labels. One article precisely stated that. I, being me, decided to challenge the preconceived notions in both pieces. I paid the price for that, but as someone who believes in justice for all, I will continue to address with as much diplomacy as possible.
As someone who has seen many people with expertise in various fields, I am not impressed by letters following one’s name. What I do find admirable is the person’s diligence and tenacity for accomplishing their goal. Many people who have walked through my bricks-and-mortar office and my virtual one have the letter “D” and “d” next to their names. All of them are lovely, and I celebrate their achievements. Be that as it may, I have also seen brilliant and successful people who do not have any credos after their name. Some have been the most remarkable people you can meet. I tell you this because those who look down at others use their credentials as a way to rationalize their elitist stance. When they use writing or speaking from the bully pulpit, they preen themselves as being all-knowing. I hate to pop their bubble, but they are not. These individuals are just as wounded as the rest of us, as they wrap their prose in flowery or vituperative language justified by passionate virtue.
I am not here to attack anyone. Again, I could be talking about two men, two women, or one of each. That is not the point. I do not believe all men misuse power, and I recognize the fairer sex is not always so fair. We have to learn to agree to disagree, restraining ourselves from making disparaging assumptions in the public arena. I do not care if you are a president, king, queen, or a poor, homeless person on the street. We are as unique as the stars in the sky, but in terms of equality, the same. I invite people to recognize their wounded souls before they congratulate themselves, looking down their noses at others they deem less than. If they do not, they might consider who is, genuinely, the “less than” and more wounded.