Sunday, November 8, 2009

The True Meaning of Diversity

So this is one of those true blog random thought moments. But an event happened today that really made me think and angered me to say the least.

As I was walking on campus today (as most of my stories now start) there was a small rally of people talking about diversity (at least from what I could tell). The majority of them were not caucasian. As I walked though them I heard one of them say:

“What the hell does a white man know about diversity?”

The statement was not directed at me, but just something a few of the people there were talking about. I just kept walking, but as I went back to my car I thought about his statement and my anger grew.

I know very well that as a white male I am fairly high on our society’s chain. Caucasians are very much in a better spot and males are too. This is another thing that has always irked me about society, but that is not the meaning of this post. Through society’s warped ways people are placed into boxes based on different aspects of themselves, and then these boxes are placed in order of importance on society’s shelf. Not a pleasant way of it; but that is how society operates; for now.

So even though some of the boxes I am placed in are high up (like being male and white) there are others that are much lower (very close to the bottom in fact). My sexual orientation and gender expression for example. In many ways I lean more towards the feminine side in my actions, and for that I am put down and sneered at. *This of course also proves the bad rap that women get; but, not to insult women in the least, a man (at least how society defines one) who exhipits more “feminine” qualities is valued a lot less than a women. This is because “feminine” actions are considered inferior to begin with and society has brainwashed everyone to hate a man who shows them.*

But I digress…

I am not even arguing or trying to prove that I am in a worse place than others (such as the people of different ethnicities at the rally today). **Although I will say one thing to that argument: No other minority is denied things by LAW. Just saying.** But when did diversity become only understood by people in a minority situation. Diversity is about difference and unique qualities of people. This can mean ethnicity (as it often is used to mean) but hundreds of other things as well: social economic status, sex, gender expression, sexual orientation, interests, clothing expression, dietary choices, ANYTHING THAT MAKES PEOPLE UNIQUE. Everyone is diverse, because every single person is slightly different. THIS is the true meaning of diversity.

In conclusion, I feel like saying a “white man” knows nothing of diversity is showing a lack of knowledge of the true meaning of diversity. Anyone can know about diversity by just looking into themselves and seeing how they are wonderfully unique.

Sorry that was so long; I have strong feelings on this matter. Let me know what you all think.


**Careful what you say; ‘cause I hear you, and I WILL write about you!**


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