It is easier to attack a person’s character when you have no idea who they truly are.
Whether it’s because of race, political party affiliation or a preferred football team, we quickly categorize people based on the most minor, irrelevant details about them. But the truth is that we see what people allow us to see with little to no transparency.
Even self-proclaimed open books have a few details they prefer to keep under wraps, and more often than not, it leads to misunderstandings.
Life seems easier when one assumes that they’re the only person with a past, triggers, experiences and every other factor that makes us all human. Misunderstandings occur because people fail to extend the grace and understanding they never experienced.
We all do what we do, think what we think and react the way we do because of our experiences, and those differ from person to person. Even though this may seem obvious, it is quickly forgotten when political parties, religion or even sexualities differ.
We live in an environment that is quick to disown, quick to argue and react rather than to listen and connect and even quicker to judge someone based on broad, vague details about them.
Stereotyping has been deemed wrong … but it still happens. The word judge has a negative connotation, and yet we do it every day intentionally and unintentionally.
The beauty in different perspectives, opinions and even cultures is that there is so much to learn and admire, but we often find ourselves labeling and categorizing people instead of admiring and celebrating them.
Differences weren’t meant to be dividers. They weren’t meant to separate us and make us view someone as inferior or view their opinion as ignorant. They were meant to empower and educate us.
Every different aspect of someone should be another beautiful quality, but society has given undesirable differences a negative connotation.
As people, we get so caught up in our pride that we reject ideas or appearances that we aren’t familiar with. It almost seems disrespectful to your own culture to uplift another.
These are concepts we have to throw out in order to progress as people. Different cultures are the key to success and different perspectives are the cheat code to life.
Our separation shouldn’t need an explanation when all of our skills and cultures combined could produce a thriving society. So, be less reactive to someone whose political party is different or if they prefer their steak a certain way because the two different perspectives could create a world we could only imagine.
Bre’Anna Coleman is a sophomore political science major from Drew, Miss.