We receive a lot of backlash in many ways these days. This generation of believers, of those who believe in change, of those who trust in their opinions, those who voice their opinions, and those who practice freely, their freedom. The nation has recently gained new leadership, and it has torn the country into two separate sides, those who fight for the rights of what they believe, and those who believe the change our nation is receiving is right in line with their beliefs and standards. No matter your side, that is fine, however, why decide to tear one person’s opinions and beliefs down just because of those beliefs of your own.
As I think about this, I think about the way my parents brought me up. In order to live the life you want and the life you deserve, you have to be strong and go on in the path you trust. While travelling down this path, you may experience much discrimination along the way, much ridicule for your own beliefs, but instead of letting it change your mind, allow yourself to realize that not everyone holds the same beliefs. Some people may have not been raised to accept opinions of others and respectfully accept that everyone is different and move on. While growing up, my house was a decent democracy. My siblings and I were encouraged to voice our own opinions, and follow where those opinions led us. We were encouraged to follow our dreams, to stand up for those who were put down and needed our support, to not judge others by their own opinions, and finally, to love one another, no matter who that other person may be. We were raised to know and accept everyone is different, and these differences should make us stronger as one unified body instead of tear us apart.
My siblings and I were taught that as human, you are not going to agree with all people and the opinions they have. In addition to this, you are not going to support the opinions others hold, but that doesn’t mean these opinions aren’t valid. You may not be in the situation that these people are in; you may not feel the effects that they have felt to create these opinions. However, that doesn’t make it appropriate to judge the opinions of others. Every single person was raised to believe different things, and quite frankly, if you weren’t in one’s household every moment of their raising, you have no reason to judge the upbringing they have received, as you are completely blind to how a person was fully and completely raised. Personally I can say that I am beyond thankful to be raised to express and accept these beliefs.
So in light of recent events, elections, marches, and rebuttal from countless entities, I wanted to express my thanks. Thank you to my mother for teaching me to always follow my dreams, express my opinions, hold tight to those opinions, to not let any man be held to a pedestal above me, and to not let the thoughts of others influence me as a person, as everyone is different. Thank you to my father and brother for teaching me that no man has the right to talk down on any woman, whether in the past, present, or future, that respect for a woman and her body should be upheld by any man, that no one person can replace me as a person, that I am beautiful in my own body, no matter what media may say, and finally, that I am as strong as any man even while belonging to a gender which has a second place standing. Finally, thank you to my sister, for teaching me to always fight for what I believe in, that I as a woman should have full freedom to the rights of my own body, to stand up for those who cannot fight in entirety by themselves, to stand up for the poor and give to the needy, to not let any negative feedback ever break me down, and to not give into judgments of others who may not hold the same opinions of me. So call us crybabies, no good citizens, destroyers, complainers, and whatever else you may want, but his is how I was raised, what I was taught by my upbringing, and this is how I’ll continue to live.