As a child, I used to spend my time at the summerhouse with my grandparents, pumping the pedals of a pushbike, arms spread wide.
I enjoyed every single bit of it. I was free.
Through the years, this zeal was replaced by the hamster wheel of acceptance. I became a typical control freak, fighting to integrate into modern society.
I bought the lie that unless I please people around me, there was no particular worth to myself. My self-esteem was only as good as my latest accomplishment. I felt pressured to please and sadly I still do.
If I am struggling with my own acceptance of myself- what about my acceptance of society and the decisions it makes on my behalf?
For instance, does a person have a right not to be discriminated against, does the society have a right to discriminate, and, if both are true, which is more important to maintaining liberty?
While I feel it’s important to distinguish the two, both are two sides of the same coin.
Think it out: If, via social pressure, laws are created preventing you from acting in accordance with your beliefs, isn’t it violating your own freedom of choice?
Most of us are being discriminated against on a daily basis, but never think about it in that sense. For example a bar has a right not to serve a drink to a customer, that’s discrimination. A restaurant might not accept customers with kids- that’s also a form of discrimination.
Are you married? You probably also discriminated all those people whom you didn’t choose to spend your life with.
To be brutally honest- every time you pick one thing over another, congratulations, you are discriminating! The question is when is enough, what are the criteria and when does your right to discrimination go beyond the acceptable limit?
Think about it in this way. Do you believe people should have rights? Sure. That’s an easy one. When you discriminate against someone’s sexual orientation, beliefs or disabilities should the government be allowed to step in and legislate against intolerance? Yes of course.
I support the LGBTQ community, primarily because it’s a matter of personal liberty, to which, in my opinion, personal feelings and prejudice is irrelevant. Many gay, lesbian and transgender people are still battling for their civil rights in courtrooms and in the streets.
It’s an individuals freedom of choice to make a judgement towards what level of discrimination is correct. In my opinion people should feel free to do whatever they want as long as it doesn’t infringe upon other people’s rights.
Again, there is no set answer to whether it’s acceptable to discriminate or not. Personally, whenever I am unclear about which side of an argument to support, my emotions get the best of me.
Writing this article, even now I’m uncertain whether it is even possible to make a clear statement about it. It’s the 21-century and people are free to be any way they feel. Within moral boundaries.
Whatever that means.