“Equality is not in regarding different things similarly, equality is in regarding different things differently.” Tom Robbins. In our age of political correctness we have the tendency to overcompensate in the name of equality. We stifle our own preferences, turn a blind eye to differences, and make one size fits all solution to every problem. In the interest of being fair we have stopped treating people as individuals. It certainly seems like no harm can come from passing laws with the good intention of making things fair for everyone. The problem is, you cannot rid the world of hate and inequality by passing laws. All you succeed in doing is making it invisible.
The government seems intent on passing more laws. Tougher gun laws will certainly stop crime. Problem being, criminals do not follow the law, so more likely the result will be less law abiding citizens with guns. Our nation is unhealthy and overweight. so, the government responds with heavy taxes on cigarettes and tax penalties, for going without health insurance. Surely hitting people in their wallet will encourage them to do the “right” thing. There is no chance its just going to succeed in making the poor people poorer. Our nation is in a war against obesity, so they try to pass laws to ban happy meal toys and super-sized fries and drinks. Clearly Americans need the governments intervention in order to make good choices.
Lois Lowry creates a world where it is considered impolite to point out peoples differences, in her young adult novel, “The Giver”. The book shows the benefits and sacrifices of a world of “sameness.” The government makes all the choices for the residents, to be certain no one makes a mistake. What is left is a Utopian society without crime, acclimate weather, or even pain. Even the people all look the same, because differences in color have been eliminated. Granted, this is with the good intention of ending discrimination, but it seems a few steps too far. This book portrays a possible future if we continue to allow the government to limit our freedom of choice, under the guise of doing whats best for us.
I’m not saying that the concept of a world without hunger and disease, natural disasters, and hate, isn’t worth striving for. But I am saying it is simply not possible to legislate morality. I may think its bad to smoke, eat fast food, and own guns, but that doesn’t mean I want to infringe upon other peoples rights. Further, I am not willing to trade my freedom of choice for someone else’s idea of right and wrong. Maybe you could care less about these issues, but the next rights that the government wants to infringe on might be something that is important to you.
The point is, there is not a one sized fits all answer to our problems. Complex problems require complex solutions. I think instead of trying to solve the world by looking around, we look within. Instead of trying to change everybody else, work on changing yourself. Don’t look at the fast food on your neighbors plate, and judge…look at your own, and be thankful there is something on it. Don’t look with jealously on the good fortunes of others; I’m sure, you honestly wouldn’t want to take it away. Know that fate smiles on us all at different times, in different ways, and soon you will see the gifts you have been bestowed. Soon, you will realize you do not want the same life as everyone else. You want a life as rare and wonderful as the person in charge of it…YOU.