Jul 27, 2009

Tolerance & Intolerance: The Beauty and Curse of Diversity

A few days ago I came up with the following message for my MSN account:

Diversity is good: gives you plenty of options to be discriminative and intolerant, and practice your inner bigotry.

Oh, I know, that's so politically incorrect, so insulting for so many people in so many levels that it can't even be harnesed into words. Oh yes, I know. However, it doesn't make it false, and that's something a lot of "politically correct" people chose to ignore. Why? Well, for once, maybe it makes life easier for them, makes them feel they are "right" because they want to be "right", and want to pretend that there's a "higher order" in the world, where justice is mankind's daily bread, and fairness is practiced everywhere and stuff like that. If you ask me, my money is in the "money". Truth is that you can make a lot of money by defending politically correct positions, and also can create an image you can sell, as a politically correct agent, which will put you ahead of those who don't follow that rule. After all, if you are "politically correct" you must manage also other fine rules of the lobbying-cheating-lying-masking up package usually called "diplomatic skills". And what's the bottom line of this? Image to get connections, connections to get positions, positions to get power, and power to get The Money. (Well, Karl Marx already said that money was behind mankind's history (sort of). I'd only add that money keeps motivating past, present and future when it comes to mankind.)

Whatever the motivation, whatever the POV, thing is that all people are basically discriminative. Sure, I won't deny it, there are ways of discrimination that are more damaging than others, but discrimination is all we do. The basic standing of people is to discriminate those they don't know. Our folks teach us so, when they tell us not to speak to strangers and not to accept things from strangers. Of course, the idea is to protect us as children, so that we don't get hurt, but we are never told to stop, and so we carry it over into our lives, adjusting the parameters of our discriminative upbringing to other areas. Fact is that we have to spot the new "bad man with candies" in order to make us feel safe. Is this wrong? I've no idea. Truth is that life keeps placing many "bad people" around from which we have to protect ourselves, and we have to learn to spot them and take precautions against them.

Is bad people of a different etnic group? Is bad people foreing? Is bad people from the country? Is bad people poor? Is bad people homeless? Is bad people from another religion? Is bad people atheist? Is bad people uneducated? Is bad people sexually liberated? is bad people badmouthed? is bad people from another political party? Does bad people like guns? Does bad people hate war?Is bad people gay? Is bad people polygamist? Is bad people straight? Is bad people fundamentalist Christian? Is bad people antisemite? Is bad people racist?

Truth is that it's not so easy to pin point bad people just from a general group. Life doesn't resemble books and movies and video games in this sense: there's not bad-people group and good-people group, and truth is that we are good for some and bad for some. A feminist group would consider me good because I'm a woman, but a womanhater group would consider me evil. Some would consider me evil because I work, I'm unmarried and I'm not a virgin. Other would consider me good because of all of those characteristics. What about you? Which of your features make you both angel and demon?

Then, usually where there's a form of discriminations, a counter-movement forms as well. It is not unheard of black people discriminating white people, gay people discriminating straight people, Jews discriminating non-Jew people, and so on. It even has a name: reverse discrimination. So, in the end, people from a group, which is being discriminated for their whatever characteristic, are using the exact same parameters to discriminate others. Again, a game of discrimination. Yes, it seems that it's the game of mankind.

Thing is that THEN comes this new group, which claims to be against discrimination. It would sound cool, except that they discriminate as well. Don't look at me like that. They, who claim to accept all man kind, whatever their distinctive characteristics, are, as well, discriminative. The tolerants are the biggest intolerants of all. How can the so called "tolerant" people call themselves tolerants? They are just as discriminative as those who discriminate. What kind of tolerance is that where you discriminate other people based on their believes? Because, after all, discrimination IS based on believes.

Racists discriminate people based on their skin colour. Not like people can change their skin colour (though Michael Jackson could), but skin doesn't make them who they are. Sexists discriminate people based on their genitals. Again, there's more to people than what they have between the legs. And so on with the rest of the discriminating groups, but what is that one thing that makes us who we are? Our mind. Our believes, our ideals, our hopes and dreams. The things stored in our souls. That's what "tolerant" people use to discriminate. Because if you don't believe, like them, that everybody is "equal", then you are an "intolerant, discriminative monster" that should be bullied out fo the face of the Earth.

There are a lot of things that we have to change, and a lot of them won't be changed, BUT violence and intolerance, bullying and name calling is NOT the way to do it. Which is the way? Acceptance, tolerance or, if the case is just too invasive (like I won't try and make friends with some sexist asshole that sees me as a piece of ass, or some racist motherfucker who can't get past my halfblood, creole origin) you just do as in a "ranchera" song I heard once: "te agachas y te vas de lado" (you shrink and go sideways). Why to put up a fight? Why to get into trouble with every little stone? Examples do more, measured comments do more.

Pick your battles and simply understand that someone how has discriminative POVs is someone who is looking for the bad man he or she has to protect him or herself from. They are still children.

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