Sunday, September 30, 2012

The Blessing of Inequality

Have you ever thought about the word equality? Is it even possible to attain equality. More importantly, is it even desirable? If our pursuit is to be equal, and treat everyone equal, then we lose ourselves and stifle others.

For instance: when I apply this to motherhood, I think, "How easy it would be if I could be the same parent to each child and simply ensure that there were the same opportunities across the board for all of my children." The problem is, easy does not garner the best results. Easy means much is lost.

It seems so simple to just make everything the same and have all the problems cease. Trouble is, the more people are shoved into boxes, the more they want out. Problems don't cease, they grow. Nobody really wants equality. Everybody thrives on individuality, they just might not have had the joy of experiencing it yet.

People who want equality generally want it for everyone else, not themselves. They want to be the do gooder, the champion of a cause, the stifler of all stiflers so they can rise above the masses of the equal. There is also the case of the misery loves company equalizers. In my experience that mentality comes from a place of frustration regarding said individual's inability to practice, for whatever reason, individuality for his or her own self.

I am not saying that genuine and good people aren't out there fighting the good fight for all those "lesser" and "unfortunate" people. I am simply saying that if you look at what they really want, it has nothing to do with equality and more to do with celebrating individuality.

I come from the camp that there are no "lesser" or "unfortunate" people. I come from the camp that truly believes we are all created equal in the sight of God. That does not mean we benefit from equality of the social, economic, educational, or any other worldly variety. We all have trials. We all struggle. In our own ways, and in our own circumstances, we all have difficulties to navigate and choices to make. We will never be equal, except in the sight of God.

If my life's work is to be just like so and so and have the same opportunities as said so and so, then I never get to discover me. I am unique. I am an individual. So are you. My life need not be patterned after, nor compared to, any other. Same with yours.

As a parent I am constantly debating with myself over whether or not a certain discipline or teaching method is working for a certain child. It is difficult for sure. It takes much time and effort and a deep understanding of the heart of each individual I am governing over. It is also incredibly rewarding to see individuality triumph every time. This is exactly why a large body, government or otherwise, is not the best source for governing individual lives and families.

America was founded on the principle of individuality. God sees the good in all. He also sees the need for us to pursue our happiness and not have it defined for us, or handed to us on a silver plater. Agency is a beautiful thing, but it does have its consequences. Everything does. When we scream for equality we better be ready to accept the consequences of that equality.

Conversely, have you savored individuality? Have you really stopped to think about how absolutely wonderful it is that you are you and not anyone else. And that everyone else is them and not you. It's a marvelous thing to contemplate.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I take it you are unfamiliar with D&C 78:3-7, and the entire United Order thing.

As far as America goes, while individual liberties were important to the Founders, they were not everything. They were also very interested in the common good, and willing to abridge personal liberties when necessary for the common good.