I Don’t Like Labels

You have about 100 billion neurons in your brain.  There are enough variations in just your brain chemistry alone to guarantee that there has never been another individual like you, ever.  And there will never be someone identical you, either.  You are completely unique, shaped by the journey that has delivered you to where you are now.

In all of existence, there is only one you.

I think we forget this fact.  It’s easy to forget.  And, if I’m being a little cynical, I think we’re encouraged to forget.

There are constant dividers being thrown at us.  We’re all asked to give up our individuality, our humanity, and fold ourselves into boxes so that we can be labeled.  Male.  Female.  Straight.  Gay.  Rich.  Poor.  Republican.  Democrat.  Black.  White.  Hispanic.  Old.  Young.  Conservative.  Liberal.  Christian.  Atheist.  Buddhist.  Muslim.

This is the problem.  This is why we can’t have nice things.  This is why we’re so separated, and unable to appreciate each other.

I’m not talking about unfairly applying stereotypes.  That is one of the problems, certainly, but it’s not the worst one.  The worst problem is that if we are separated like this, we cannot connect and communicate in a real way.  We just stand on opposite sides of the divide, shouting at each other.

I’ve been away from my blog for weeks.  I’ve been reading the news, watching the problem get worse and worse.  It is depressing, and I have been depressed.  I haven’t been able to write.

We need to do better.  We need to find a way to communicate.  We need to find common ground, and build on it.

I am unhappy with most of Trump’s cabinet picks, but I’m willing to discuss their merits and have my opinion changed.  I’m worried about Sessions as Attorney General because of his past, but I’m willing to give him a chance.  I would feel even better about him if someone were to give me examples of some of the good things he’s done.

I’m worried about DeVos as Secretary of Education, but that’s mostly because the only things I know about her is that she doesn’t seem to be qualified, has never participated in public school, and some of her stances on school vouchers and for-profit schools might be a problem for kids in poor or struggling households.  I’m willing to have my mind changed, though.  If anyone knows anything about her that will make me feel better about the kind of job she’ll do in that position, I would really like to hear it.

I long to have a discussion with someone that is both informed and in favor of Trump’s choices.  I want to see the world from their perspective.  I want my views challenged.

I’m surrounded by people that, for the most part, share my opinions about matters political.  It doesn’t give me much comfort.  There are people out there that seem to approve of where Trump is trying to lead our country, and I have no way of identifying with those people.  I want to.  I want to understand.  Maybe they see something that I don’t see.

It could be a matter of being misinformed.  Perhaps people that are supporting Trump believe that crime is at an all-time high.  That’s not the information I have.  Perhaps I’m misinformed.  If I am misinformed, then I would like to be corrected by a credible source.

See, even as I’m writing this, I’m backing into one of those labels.  For Trump, or Against Trump.

I don’t want that.  If I am to have a label, I want it to be “For Humanity.” I want less discrimination, and more appreciation for the heart and soul of every human being out there.  I want us all to remember that you can’t tell what someone’s been through at a glance.  We all have a unique story to our lives.

And I like stories.