As humans we have a need to belong – a longing to be liked and accepted. We feel incomplete without a community with people like us, and no matter how much Tarzan was able to fit in with the gorillas, he still wanted to know more about his real world.
When you look at the behavior of people it’s easy to question just how much that comes from nature, and what exactly comes from nurture. Culture is a result of nurture, and that is made up by a group of people with similar values (but you knew that already).
So we know that the need to be liked is nature, and values comes from nurture, then why is it so easy for us to point out societal outcasts? Let’s start with one of the most prominent population in the US – the LGBT community. North Carolina and Georgia, is displaying a grave need to segregate a bunch of perfectly healthy people, and it’s leading to some huge economic changes as businesses are pulling out, or at least considering it.
That is what’s going on in one of the world’s most influential countries, and then consider the smaller communities in emerging markets. What really gets me scratching my head is wondering how certain perceptions of people came about in the first place. Who decided that it was wrong to be gay? Who decided to remove the parts of the Bible that contain male lovers? Even the ancient Greeks didn’t conceive of sexual orientation as a social identifier – so how have we “advanced” to the current situation? How did the developing countries – that often don’t even have public access to the internet develop these values and opinions about the LGBT’s?
Let’s look at another serious situation of segregation – the refugees from Syria and other countries ruled by chaos and terror. Most of the wealthy countries are closing their doors because they won’t be able to handle the influx of people – which would be understandable if real estate or employment was limited. But in most of these countries it isn’t. One of the arguments, especially from the Scandinavian countries, is about the fact that these people are so different and will have a hard time adapting to society. While some would call it discrimination, other’s will realize just how little diversity Northern Europe has.
An then there’s France doing their own thing. Due to their terrifying terror threats, I’m going to leave them alone for now.
It’s hard to not care passionately about these issues when they concern your own friends. I never had a need to stand up for the LGBT community until I realized just how hard life has been for some of my closest friends here in NYC. I went to a dinner a few weeks back and was astounded when I was told that a good gal couldn’t move back to her home country because she wasn’t able to be herself there – people wouldn’t accept her. What made it even worse is that she has been living in a place where people accepted her and encouraged her to be herself – and going back to extreme conservatism makes it all so much harder. If this was the case with your best friend – would you care? Isn’t it about time that we stop judging people for what they do in their own spare time and focus on what they can bring you in terms of knowledge, experience and tons of laughter instead? Throw glitter at the haters, I sure will.