So I've been thinking a lot over the past two or three decades ...
Humans by nature, for whatever reason, categorize virtually everything:
Right - Wrong
Normal - Abnormal
Thin - Fat
Conservative - Liberal
Boy - Girl
Black - White
Religious - Heathen
Smart - Stupid
Friend - Enemy
??? - ???
... ... - ... ...
The list could go on until the internet explodes.
To some degree I believe society got it right; there are stereotypes for a reason. I mean, there are certain actions, ideals, rituals or other behaviors we expect to see from certain groups. The problem lies where a person doesn't fit within these neatly pressed molds as everyone expects they should.
Conservative view - Uphold the constitution to ensure the rights of every United States citizen:
Problem - If you truly want to uphold the rights of the citizens, then you will stop trying to pass laws that infringe on those rights. You will voluntarily withdraw any and all laws passed over the past 70+ years where the federal government has taken individual state;s rights or infringed on individual personal freedoms.
Abortion, individual's lifestyle, how a state chooses to spend it's own money or what a state would like to deem as legal is not the business of the federal government.
Holy cow!! The grief I catch when I say that near these pseudo conservatives is incredible. I do not insist they agree with me. In fact, I appreciate their insight and respect their opinion. I accept our differences and I move on ... I only ask that they do the same.
Christian view - This is my commandment that ye love on another ... Do unto others as you would have them do unto you ... And so on
Problem - If you truly believe that you are supposed to treat others the way you want to be treated, and you truly believe that you are supposed to love everybody, then you would not exclude people who fall outside your belief system. This just does not make sense at any level anyway, "I believe in God's eternal love, but I'm not going to share it with you because you're ... (fill in the blank with your favorite unrepentant sin)."
If God's love is eternal and all encompassing, then he loves even those who do not believe in him. He accepts the differences in behavior and lifestyle because He made us the way we are. And if you as a Christian believe that my interpretation of God's word is too liberal, then you need to look into other Christian basic religions such as Catholic, Amish, Seventh Day Adventist and so on. If you do not abide by their more strict beliefs does that mean that you are truly not a Christian?
And isn't it a tad bit arrogant on your part to tell me that because God has sent you down a different path than me that I must not be following His directions? How do you know that my life isn't simply a test to see how far or truly I will follow Him? Perhaps He intends to see if I will trust Him through the toughest of times despite the fact that many of my fellow Christians will not support or condone what I am doing.
I've taken an insane volume of verbal thrashing over my beliefs in who and what God is. People who are so stubborn to listen ... or people who cannot rebut my views tend to try and settle the debate by becoming argumentative and yelling. It works ... I walk away. It's a shame, really. If I am wrong, and they were went to straighten me out, they missed their opportunity. I enjoy hearing what others believe and weighing it against what I believe ... I wonder why others are incapable of this.
Smart - A highly educated person having great intelligence or mental status.
Problem - If you truly believe that the diploma in your hand, the degree or the doctorate on your wall makes you smarten than somebody else then you are proving just how little you understand about life.
I have a high school diploma and about three years at a community college under my belt. I also have a very inquisitive mind and fell in love with the internet very early on ... I could find practically anything and learn. I have studied pharmacology, anatomy and physiology, computer programming, emergency medicine, laws and regulations, and ... and ... and it doesn't matter. What matters is if I can perform my job and live my life in an adequate manner.
I understand that a degree can help you advance your career or earn more money, but that does not actually make you better or smarter than the 75 year old man who has been a janitor at the local school since he was 19. It definitely doesn't make you happier.
And really ... why is the piece of paper or the title so important to a person? The people who do not respect you now are not suddenly going to respect you because you can call yourself "doctor." The reality is the if you have worked your way up to CEO you are still no more important than the workers. If you are the cafeteria worker who serves the food to the customers you are no less important than the head chef.
Everyone has their own capabilities and capacity to excel at something ... or many things. The people who treat me like they are better than me are annoying at best. I enjoy learning ... I love hearing new points of view or strategies to perform a job. The problem with thinking that you know more than another person is you tend to close your ears and mind. If you close your ears and mind you are robbing yourself of opportunities to learn.
I could ramble on and on ... well, actually I already have. I have learned to dislike the divisive conduct and comments that have become so prevalent in our society. Just because you believe on thing does not automatically mean that a different ideal, though process or procedure is wrong.
There was no particular reason for this rant ... just a build up of frustrations over the years.