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Making Progress

Humans have a tendency to put carts before horses. If we are working on something that is important then we are more likely to show competitiveness, or practice ignorance, rather than sharing the load. We are disinclined to show vulnerability. This is true of the big problems like climate change, animal numbers being decimated and treating mutating diseases. It is also true of social issues and heading towards equality.

Why are problems that could sometimes be solved so quickly take so agonizingly long? A simple answer is that revolutions, (i.e. a total backlash against the status quo) don’t work or they don’t last, or don’t quite the way we hoped for them to, or just go on to set up almost identical situations with some new faces. This highlights yet another human trait which is the resistance to change. We might change situations in moments, but if we haven’t changed attitudes, it’s just a matter of time until things swing back to what they were (sometimes worse than ever). Does this mean we should just sit there an take injustice as it is? Of course not. So, rather than forcing situational change which hasn’t worked out so well, what will?

Before we get to that, it is important to realise that Humans speak thousands of different languages and yet often we struggle to communicate in our own. Motivations and intentions also differ as do our values and desires. So finding a common goal and working towards it in a manner where everyone understands exactly what the goal is, and to make it last, is hard, almost impossible on a global scale. The Stonewall riots took place just over fifty years ago, inspiring and creating change over much of the world and yet some countries still stone or castrate their LGBT+ population as if the event didn’t take place at all.

So how do we unite and strengthen our move towards equality and freedom whilst ensuring we change attitudes and not just situations?

Pride 365 believes that the first step should be in understanding. Basic understanding leads to greater understanding and that leads to a gradual change in attitudes. Pride was so effective as a protest because it didn’t attack, or force beliefs down people’s throats, it simply said “here we are, this is us, and we are proud of that.” People fear the unknown and what they don’t understand. Pride put the unknown and the scary out for all to see.

Now we face new challenges of understanding even in the Western World. With individuals in the LGBT+ community who feel unrepresented or misrepresented, people who feel like they have become part of the hegemony, their own unique troubles or views lost in the noise. To solve these problems, similarly the first step has to be in clearing up the confusion, having an open mind to the fact that we might not know everything and walking hand in hand incrementally towards understanding, because that is what leads to progress and changing attitudes. We don’t always have to agree with each other to understand each other and we should take the time to judge others by their own standards and perspectives not our own which encourages others to do the same.

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