The Intersectionality of Progression
I tend to not write things of this nature but I felt, given all that's been going on consistently for months, that it was time to. I love my nation, I honestly do and I think the United States of America is one of the greatest places on this planet. It isn't perfect, but then again no nation can ever be because they are run by humans which are fallible, susceptible to error, and imperfect themselves. Having said all of that, I feel as though, even while technology is advancing at the speed of light, human relations and understanding is going backwards in time to a place we should not be headed to.
It is 2016 and the nation is more odds with itself than ever, almost like the Civil War but more factions than just the North and the South. There are the LGBQT Americans, African/Black Americans, Hispanic/Latino Americans, the Arabic/MuslimAmericans and the Asian/SouthEast Asian Americans all fighting amongst each other and against the WASPAMs (White Anglo Saxon Protestant Able-bodied Men) of society that constrain and attempt to still control status quo. Some might shake their heads and say, "The minority groups aren't fighting amongst themselves." I would have to strongly disagree. There are massive separatist mindsets that think, "You're not (insert group) so you can't talk on my causes." I've witnessed such mindsets first hand and it not only baffles me but saddens me. There's this constant separating of people and assumption of race, ethnic origins and so forth. The assumptions are part of the problem. Telling someone they are something they are not and telling them they don't get the "right" to claim what they "don't look" is unfair and just plain rude. Over 50% of the world's population is mixed, think about that the next time you profile someone mentally.
The world is changing at such a rapid pace with more pushes for equality among the sexes, acceptance of the queer community (whether it be sexuality, gender identity or something else), and further equality among the "races" (I put this in quotations because there's technically only one race, the human race). The problem with rapid change is that there tends to be a lot of pushback because it isn't something that is "normal" and so those that wish to maintain "normal" get in an uproar. Is that right? No, it really isn't, but it is a reality. The other issue is how the media shapes many people's reality. The way transgendered, homosexuals, queer gendered and marginalized groups of people are spun in the media helps to reinforce negative stereotypes which is just harmful all around. There's a quote from a women that has stuck with me and it is, "You are not born a bigot, bigotry is learned." It means you are not born a sexist, racist, discriminatory pig, you are conditioned and taught to be one.
Having said all of that, we will always notice difference. Always. Because we are creatures that like things to be neat and so we separate people off in our heads as those we like and those we don't. We tend to not like people that are too different from us in a "bad" way, make exceptions for those that are different from us in a "good" way and really like people who are extremely similar to us. This can be seen from early childhood. You tend to keep friends who share similar interests, political opinions, views on life and so forth. It is a natural occurrence. The problem from this comes the mindset that different is wrong or bad and that it makes that person lesser of a human being. It comes when you try to have a hierarchy of humans based upon religion, skin tone, ethnic roots and so on.
There are self-serving humans who thrive off of power and position. You will recognize these humans in rapists, murderers and so on. Think of star athletes that rape innocent women and say they "had it coming" because they are so entitled and abuse their position in society. Star athletes get hero worship which, for a decent amount, leads to inflated egos and a sense of, "everyone wants me even if they say no." This is a powerful thing. Think of the cops who pull a woman over to ask for her number because she's a pretty female and give her a bogus ticket because she rejected them. Think of the cops that beat and kill people without hesitation because they "are the law." Police brutality isn't always seeded in racism, although many incidents that are broadcasted on the news tend to be, but rather a sense of they are above you and can do as they damn well please. Sexism plays a role in all of these scenarios, as well. Women are objects and should stroke the ego of the man. Notice the intersectionality yet?
In 2016, we still blame the rape victim and ask what she was wearing and if she provoked the rape. Yes, because someone walked into a bar, asked to be raped and then cried to the police. That makes so much sense, not. Also, there's a backwards notion that men can't be sexually assaulted or raped because men love sex and sexual attention. Fascinating, isn't it? At any given time, race, position in society, sexual orientation, gender gender identity and biological sex can cause life to not be as equal or comfortable someone who "follows the status quo." Think about that the next time you try to tell someone they don't "understand your problem" because they aren't "a part of your group." Pretty much anyone who isn't a cyst-gendered, White, heterosexual male understands discrimination on some level. Stop with your separatist mind-set and think of how the more people who are a part of speaking out about your struggle, the better. Only together can there ever truly be change and progress.