The human species comprises a spectacular array of differences from across the entire world, as unique to each individual as the cultures they arise from. As Dan Aykroyd says in the Blues Brothers, “There are still some things that make us all the same / You, me, them, everybody… / Everybody needs somebody to love.”
The love that human beings have the capacity to experience is as unique and beautiful to each soul as the path it meanders through generations of culture and history toward individual corporeal expression. If we were all the same, we would all be very bored and boring. Everything in life is about balance, and although we do need a certain level of cohesion, acceptance, and tolerance toward others to build what we call society, we must never forget to allow for individual tastes, styles, and preferences. Humans do better when they are in balance with themselves, the environment, development, relationships, and all areas of life.
When it comes to love, it is easy to create categories: us vs. them, those people vs. us people. In so doing, we ruin a part of the connection the world capable of, putting us at risk of minimizing each other’s experiences and devaluing or dismissing one other. It is easy to get caught up in today’s world and forget about some of the true values and principles that would allow us to celebrate and spread respect, joy, individuality, community-mindedness, partnership, and cohesiveness.
Pride month is not just about celebrating certain groups of people at the exclusion or expense of another group of people; it is about celebrating all the fantastic uniqueness and variations that human beings are capable of. It is about celebrating love, acceptance, and what it means to be human. Having a pride month does celebrate a particular group of people whose voices may have gone unheard—or worse, silenced—historically. We can look anywhere into our past and find things that will upset us, injure us, and cause discomfort, so it is our job to look into the present and into the future to learn from those mistakes and to do better by our children than what was done to us by our ancestors. When we validate each other’s experiences, we validate being human. Only through validating each other does everybody win: everybody feels better, everybody feels welcome.
If you ask people about cars, many people have opinions on certain makes and models and what is superior and what’s not superior, what’s better and what’s not better, but on the farm, we had a saying: “they are all hunks of junk when they don’t work.” It is important to remember that even though we have differences in the cars that we like and drive, and we may have differences in the way that we love; humans—like cars—work much better when they are respected, maintained, valued, and appreciated.
So, this pride month, let us simply take some time to validate being human.
Come heal, grow and create together,
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