It’s very hard, Reader, to stand up for ourselves. It’s hard to say what bothers us, or how we think things should be, especially if we fear upsetting others.
Why is this? How do some of us value certain opinions while disregarding others, and force those around us to conform?
Perhaps some would argue that the mainstream views must be overthrown (or altered) because they don’t accommodate non-conformists. It seems to me, however, that we are all too quick to bring down “them” and “their ideas”.
Anyone notice how most people who profess a strong belief, a culture, an identity–seem to feel they can only trust those who agree with and/or “accept” them? I have two things to say to this:
- Disagreement DOES NOT mean hatred
- Do not confuse the altering of ideology with the desire for vengeance upon it
I am all for standing up for belief, for culture, for identity. I think it’s important that many ideas come together, so we can DISCUSS them. This means that some of us will agree with each other, and some of us will disagree. This is okay.
That said, disagreement nowadays is taken a little too personally. In some form or another, we have those who spurn any sort of overarching truth, and yet insist that their own definitions of common terms or ideas are the ones that should be upheld. Any who questions with these non-conformist definitions, terms, or ideas, tends to be vilified as the worst of criminals for daring to disagree.
Hold on. Sit down, breathe.
What? Why is it okay to work towards utter destruction of previous ideals, and then complain that “the battle” isn’t over until we’ve achieved complete equality as well? This does not strike me as an attitude of helpful discussion, but an attempt to dominate others and force them into our beliefs–isn’t that exactly what we’re trying to overthrow? How is it suddenly okay to give it a new face and pretend we’re not doing the same?
And so, we often confuse the altering of ideology (which would include countless discussions and decisions for both sides) with what is really personal vendetta against a system or mainstream ideals that wronged us.
Now, I absolutely agree that some decisions need to be made as quickly as possible, and I hope that (if asked) I will be entirely honest in how I think those things should go. But see, I believe these convictions because of my personal faith and not because they are culturally popular (or unpopular) at the time. And, my personal faith acknowledges a Right and a Wrong. Therefore, it is not out of character for me to say, “I believe that is Wrong,” because I actually believe in an overarching Truth.
But others disagree with me. Is it fair that I am sunk in their opinion of me solely because I disagree with them?
Sigh. Stand up for yourself, yes, but for goodness’ sake–don’t take the others’ beliefs so personally.