can’t we all just get along?

i read.  a lot.  i wish it involved more novels but during term time it is nearly impossible unless it is pressing because i have to teach it.  as a result, i flip through twitter and facebook getting bits of news and deciding which bit to pursue and which bits to let alone.  i suppose this is a good thing because we are able to sift through incredible amounts of material in this day and age.  though it is uncomfortable at times to be inundated with so much information.

something that has bothered me a great deal lately is all of the hate out there.  i have thought for a long time that extremism is something that can never been good, no  matter which side one is coming from.  i suppose there is an element of hypocrisy in saying that all extremism is negative because, in effect, i am an extremist against extremism.  anyway…

all sorts of issues and platforms arrive on the screen of my phone, telling me how to think and feel.  more specifically, i follow ms. magazine and everyday feminism on facebook and they are always providing methods of thinking about various issues involving sex, race, money and anything else controversial which can be thought of.  i consider myself a feminist but not at the expense of men.  we all have things to overcome in our lives no matter which gender we identify with.

much of what i read involves shaming and putting down one group or another.  there are a few that bother me in particular:  the negative portrayal of muslims, the continent of africa, women and refugees.  we are all a product of our experience and i am married to a muslim, living in nigeria, i am a woman and my parents were immigrants.  i just wish people could be more inclusive, kinder, more open-minded and accepting.

i find a lot of the advice confusing as a white woman.  i am told in print that i am privileged and thus have no right to think or say a number of things.  this assumption of privilege, while partially correct, does not take into account my own personal experience of struggling through a number of circumstances in my life.  i am told i cannot cite marrying outside of my race when talking about racism, in fact according to some circles, i’m not allowed to talk about racism.  it is considered racist of me to comment, based on my race.  yet, i believe open dialogue is the way forward.  if people can be open and honest with each other, i am sure there is room to learn.

in uni there was a trans-gendered woman, i think i am correct here in the terminology that said individual was born a man.  guelph was a really liberal and accepting institution and i thought nothing of hearing about this kind of scenario.  where i parted company with this person was when they wanted to work on a rape crisis line as one of the counsellors.  i was concerned that women who were the victims of rape would not want to discuss the matter with someone born a man.  maybe that makes me insensitive to the goodwill of this individual.  one of these articles would say i am using my heterosexual human privilege to look at the situation.

i guess the world is becoming increasingly complicated and extremely politically correct at the same time.  i just wish people would be nicer and avoid judgement of other alleged or labelled groups.  to quote martin luther king, even though i’m not allowed to, i think people should be ‘judged based upon the content of their character’ and not any other reason.

rude people can be of any gender, nationality or race, as can nice people.  my hope is that i will teach my children to accept everyone and be civil even to those they don’t like.

i often wonder if others out there feel the same way.



One thought on “can’t we all just get along?

  1. I am with you on what you wrote about.
    I have the same thoughts and agree people should be determined by character not by all the other ridiculous criteria, especially skin colour. What an insane idea, yet it persists and dominates racist attitudes.


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