Pro-choice or pro- life, death penalty, corporal punishment, prayer in school, gay marriages and the list goes on. Each and every one of us have an opinion and a reason for our opinion. It would be abnormal for us not to have one. We are brought up as individuals who are thought right from wrong and in learning this behavior we, as adults, have eventually formed opinions on different issues. There is a right and a wrong way to go about voicing that opinion. Apparently some people such as terrorist, members of racial hate groups and extremists were not taught that it is not necessary to hurt others in order to make a point. As Americans we were all given the constitutional right to speak our minds.
Does that mean that we have the right to terrorize others with our opinions? Do we really need to picket in front of abortion clinics and burn crosses to get our point across? What ever happened to going through the proper routes within the judicial system or even forming a group that is socially correct without inflicting emotional or physical pain. Growing up in a very small town where everyone knows everyone and the entire town is based on one religion and one race it was somewhat difficult for me to move into a city with such diversity all around me. In the beginning I was taken aback by the unbelievable cruelty that people showed one another. However in time it simply became a normal thing in my high school and college settings. Although I never agreed with them, the shock value of the racial slurs and other hateful things that I heard and saw began to ware off. I began to see them as “normal behavior” or just another idiot that didn’t know how to express themselves. Sadly I began to accept these things into my world. I didn’t have much of a choice in the matter.
To this day I still find myself saddened by the things I hear on the news or around the water cooler on a daily basis. The question at hand is what can we do about it? Of course there is the “to each their own” attitude that I have gratefully taken on. What happens when others are unable to take on that attitude. Why are other opinions being forced on me without my permission. Should I have to fight off the opinions of others when I walk into a church because we have mixed race family or a clinic with my daughter because of pro-lifers yelling at her when she is there to get birth control? Or how about the fact that I have to live with the constant reminder that my child’s’ race is non existent . According to the forms that I fill out she has to be either black or white. I know that the saying “why can we all just get along” is used as many punch lines and not taken seriously anymore but really, why can we?