Day 362 - A Flurry of Opinion
Three sides of a difference of opinion :
The valid side
The other valid side
Another valid side
When I came to this country to live, I felt an enormous pressure to be accepted, to fit into the country life. I was open to change and I knew it would be different, because I knew that where I came from was unique. I had heard about the US all my life and I had many questions, and was ready to answer questions as well. But most of all, I was ready to be accepted.
I was overcome by the flurry of opinions that came my way. I knew they were mostly ungrounded opinions because so many of them were commiseration for being so unlucky and deprived as to not having been raised in the US. It was immediately obvious that these people were ignorant. They didn't even know their own history, most of them didn't even speak one language well, and they felt their way of life was the ONLY acceptable one.
I was in shock. I'd never heard so much arrant nonsense in my life. I was denounced for not already being like them, as though that made sense. I went to their church when invited, only to be paraded in front of the congregation as someone in need of being taught how to be a 'real' American and to not let me talk like some foreigner.
So, I formed the opinion that no one else's opinions mattered at all, and that my only choice was to go my own way, forever on my own, never accepted or accepting.
I know better now, but that lonely young man didn't know better for many years. As a result, I spent decades more alone than anyone ought to be, forever a stranger in a strange land.
I still won't accept being victimized for someone else's pleasure, but I'm willing to give others more credence for their opinions being valid for them, just not for me. I'm less willing to condemn the whole nation for the acts of the ignorant. They have an opinion, so be it. It's not mine, after all.