Pull Off The Label

We are not cans of vegetables in a store that require a label to be stacked in the same area. We are people, so why do we need so many labels? There are so many labels that seem to define people that I’m starting to think that it’s made up. I’m black, female, gay, and married, but none of those define me just like those words or similar words don’t define you. One of the reasons you label vegetables is so that when you open them, you know what’s inside. Labeling people tells you nothing about the person inside. Labeling is very broad way of saying “This is me”, but why do you need to say that? It would be so nice if we could pull off the labels and people were just that, a person with a name for identification, and that’s it. “I am Anita” – that’s my identification, and that has nothing to do with who I am inside. We have got too hung up on these labels without knowing the person who is assigned a label. When you meet someone, you should look at the person, not if he is gay, straight, transgender, or anything else, just the person. We have a superficial world that looks too much at looks before seeing the person inside the body. It doesn’t matter if you are beautiful or ugly as hell if what’s inside should count more than what you look like and what label should be attached to your person. Why is it so important that you give yourself a label or a label is given to you? Does that label tell the person about you? I hope not because this world is worse off than I thought if all we are is a bunch of people trying to fit in a label like string beans in a can. When I was a kid, I saw these two people walking down the street. They were gay, I assumed. I wondered why people can’t just love who they wanted, as they were not hurting anyone. I learned as I got older that labels are used as a way to hurt people, and labels are used to define people as a certain sexual being. Again, why do you need a label to describe your sexuality? If you’re transgender, great but I rather know the person inside that transgender body. I don’t care if you’re transgender because that’s not what drew you to me. It’s that person inside that body that I want to get to know and love. I’m just saying I would rather just know your name. This doesn’t just apply to gay people but straight people as well. I don’t care if you’re straight, I just want to know your name and get to know that person inside. We are all different inside, and that is what makes us special. If you were to put all the Anita’s in the world together, we would still be different because of the person inside: there is no need to label that Anita as straight or that Anita as gay, what is the point? I really hope one day that people will stop with the labeling because it’s a false way to define someone.  It would be so much better if we pulled off the labels and just looked at the person. Maybe that would make the world a better place. It might help with all this divisiveness that is going on. It might help people to truly understand the next person without making assumptions. It could put love in the world and get rid of some of the hatred we have for certain groups of labeled people. Please take the time to pull the label off and look at the person inside before you judge. The next time someone says I’m pansexual, ask them who are they really inside without the label.

America The Beautiful or The Bruised

There are caravans of immigrants clamoring to get into this country. Why? Because there is no country that will give them the liberties that this country does. The immigrants know one thing for sure: America is the beautiful place that will save them from the stifling country from which they came. I see that America has become a bruised country. We hear a lot about a country divided, but were we really ever together? We are a divided country much like cheap cement that falls apart with the slightest wind. The cheap cement that has held us together, as we can see, has easily separated us. Can we blame anyone but ourselves for the lack of unity? No, we can’t. We have someone who pushes the envelope just like television pushes the envelope with sex. It is no wonder the two are equated. I didn’t vote for many years, maybe into my 40s, because I felt as if my vote didn’t make a difference. When the election was over and the candidate I would have voted for (if I had voted) lost, I thought I would see that my vote wouldn’t have mattered. I have since learned not to look at it in that view but to view it as my vote could be the one vote that could have taken my candidate to the winner’s podium. I vote all the time now. How many of you have that view about not voting? Another reason to vote is because people withstood a lot to make voting a right for everyone. A lot of blood has been shed to give citizens voting rights. I had not appreciated those who came before me and actually saw the importance of voting. I bet immigrants, as soon as they are given citizenship, run out and vote. Immigrants seem to appreciate this country more than the people who were actually born here. We are a bruised country by the very same things that immigrants see as America the beautiful. I’m talking about words like freedom, equality, and the things we take for granted. As for the politicians we elect into office, sometimes I wonder if it is some kind of Ponzi scheme where the head person brings in a person and every person has to keep bringing in people to keep the game going, along with money to keep it going. It might not be money that keeps the game going but rather the laws based on whoever is in charge. The game changes every four years, and unless you’re rich, the laws seem to keep feeding the upper rungs of people. Do immigrants know about this or do they even care? I doubt it because some of their governments will kill people for going against the government, whereas in America, they just change a law or get more tax money from the people at the bottom. We are a bruised country. We are a country that needs healing, but how do we heal a country that was never whole? I was in the military in the late 70s. It was during peacetime, and I hate to say this, but our military was ill prepared to continue its fight. The military then was more like a country club. It seemed like we were tired. My spouse just retired, and, in talking to her, it seems the military has changed. It had to or we could not scare other countries into believing in our strength. The immigrants see this country as a cover of protection, while some of us hope that we can keep fooling other countries about our power. It’s a sad situation. Immigrants come here for equality, but that is a blog by itself. I will say that the equality immigrants seek is just anything, because they have never really had the type of equality and freedom that they can have here. Do they realize that many people here don’t want them in this country? Do they know that they will become a minority class, that Americans will look down on them? Hell, we Americans look down on each other, so why would we welcome immigrants? The times have changed … or have they? When immigrants came here many, many years ago, they were stuffed in neighborhoods where they were all the same. The purpose of this was to keep them under control. That has been the case throughout the centuries. The immigrants still come to America the beautiful. I sadly feel, however, that we are a bruised country that can only be healed by starting all over again from the top to the bottom. I mean instituting new laws and getting rid of outdated laws. We need laws that reflect the times in which we live. There should be freedom and equality for all, no matter how much money one has. Everyone should be on an equal playing field. Why do we have rich, middle and poor classes? What is the purpose other than to divide and make one group stronger at the expense of the other? Let every man and woman, regardless of their class, fight for a job on an equal playing field. Immigrants will continue to use any means possible to get to America, while some of us here will use any means possible to go somewhere else. As bruised as the country is, maybe it’s time to heal it. That job, I hope, will come from our future generations. Hopefully, they can join together and strip away the scab on the country and let it heal.