ddhr.org | 2016 | 11 | 16 (1) about | archives | comments | rss

Rooting for underdogs Wed, Nov 16, 2016
I support underdogs.  I support people who are categorically marginalized, who have been at the receiving end of unfair treatment throughout history.  I support gay people, immigrants, brown people, women.  People who feel they were born the wrong gender.  People with different brain chemistry than my own. 

I haven't always felt this way.  I feel naturally inclined to reject people who are different.  Get over your problems.  Just be normal.  Figure it out. 

But something shifted in my thinking a few years back.  It wasn't a specific moment or event.  It was more a gradual realization:  People aren't different because they want to be.  Nobody asked to be born gay, or black.  Nobody wakes up one day and decides they want a sex change operation for the hell of it.  Depression and anxiety aren't hobbies people pick up because they want attention. 

With very few exceptions, people are different because they're different.  That's it.  They didn't ask for it.  And to reject them for being different, or for being "unnatural", or for being "gross" is just ridiculous.  Imagine someone rejecting you for your gender, or for your nationality.  You didn't ask for those things.  In fact, you had no say in those things.  You're a victim of your birth. 

For me, the opposite of rejecting people isn't ignoring people.  It's championing people.  It's rooting for the underdog.  I don't have the same experiences as a black person who's dealt with racism.  I don't have the same experiences as a person who feels they were born the wrong gender.  It may even be a little weird for me to imagine.  But I'm compelled to trust the people who say they're marginalized, instead of assuming they're all liars.  I just think people should be treated fairly and equally, regardless of whatever makes them different. #psychology