(Editor’s note: The Vanguard is proud to announce a new project in partnership with Incarcerated Allied Media. Thanks to Dr. Joan Parkin and D. Razor Babb. These articles are published by Incarcerated Individuals at Mule Creek State Prison and part of the Mule Creek Post publication.)
By Shauna Patricia
AS HUMAN BEINGS, we have a desire to be treated with respect and consideration. Along with this desire, we have a responsibility to treat others in the same way. If we can’t find the moral strength to do so, then we forfeit our rights to receive respect and consideration.
I am a member of a small group of people who are almost always deprived of respect and consideration by others. I understand that — like all groups of people — there are members of my group who don’t always act appropriately. Those members forfeit any respect and consideration they might have had coming to them.
I am writing this to ask that everyone treat others according to their actions and behavior, not according to skin color, religion, ability, or sexual orientation. It is time we start loving our fellow humans, not hurting or killing them. Please join me in this attempt to better ourselves and demonstrate that we can change our bad behaviors. Let’s try to recognize the fact that though we are different, we are still people and can make positive contributions to society.
Politicians over the last 15 or so years have been yo-yoing the policies that pertain to the LGBTQ community: First they pass many laws to benefit us, then the next administration comes and repeals them. Now the new administration renews the laws that were repealed by the last. President Biden has a transgender woman as part of his cabinet; this is a huge advancement for my community. Also, the American Medical Association and the National Institute of Mental Health have officially recognized gender dysphoria and many other diagnoses related to it as chronic medical and psychiatric conditions that must be treated to relieve severe physical and emotional pain.
In closing, I ask that we should all recognize the things that make us different, and to be tolerant and accepting of each other. I am not asking that you join the club or even like the club; just be a little more accepting and not automatically hate and want to hurt each other. It’s time to start practicing our ability to love and empathize with others. Please stop all the hate!
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