Think outside the BOX or it will be split open

Are we an unconventional, self-individualistic, sensitive community of individuals wanting to band and squish into multitudes of smaller communities of equal diversity, equal interests, equal selves, and equal equality, seeking justice and acceptance as individuals, but individuals among other individuals? Together, but not together? Equals, but not equals?

            What the hell just happened? What the hell kind of lead was that?

            Did you get lost? Did you get confused?

            Perfect. That’s society today, an accurate representation in words on paper and in practice. A confusing, intriguing jumble.

            We as individuals in this day and age, for some reason, have an incessant need to be recognized for who we believe we are. Religious beliefs, sexual orientation, gender recognition, ethnicity, racial profiles, and political preferences are a few of the biggest components that an individual feels makes them who they are.

a girl sitting in a box that says "Vegans Only."
Anastasija Mathis (photo by Braydee Holmes)

And they just have to shout who they are to the world; otherwise, they basically don’t exist.

            And if one of these communities of society has a problem — forgive me if I give offense — we throw temper tantrums, sign petitions, riot the streets, harass others, scream and cry and bawl and fight and plead until we get what we want — until perceived justice is served and we are recognized for the best, most fantastic person that we believe we are.

            Stop doing that.

            Stop it.

It’s a trend, this thing. This thing where everyone wants to be recognized. And they’ll get recognized, no matter what it takes.

            Part of this problem is that everyone seems to be looking at society through a magnifying glass, enlarging the picture so much they can no longer see society as a whole, so narrow-minded are we.

To remedy our narrow-mindedness, let’s look at the community we have wrought as a painting on canvas.

On canvas, we see many factors:

First, society is always changing, always seeking the new “best thing,” depending on what the individuals of society believe the “next best thing” is.

Second (and this is a big one), judgment runs amuck in our society. A recent one in particular is a trend, a meme, a joke: the accommodation of Millennials, Generation Z, and Generation Alpha in society nowadays. These come with presumptive judgments, or stereotypes:

“They’re lazy, unproductive.”

“They are all about themselves.”

“They are ruled by technology.”

There’s also judgment among race, gender, sexual orientation, and religion. There’s judgment everywhere.

Third, we are a society full of boxes.

There’s a separate box for everything: all religions have their own box, Democrats and Republicans and all other political parties have their own boxes, the LGBTQQIP2SAA has their own box and then smaller boxes for each letter in their name. There’s a box for every race, every hobby, every sport, every accomplishment, for every one of us.

We are told to “think outside the box,” so why are we trying to squeeze and squish and pound our way into one we feels defines us?

With the trend of “let me be heard as myself” sounding like a threatening whisper in our ears, too many people try to cram themselves into whichever box they feel they fit in and don’t realize the box keeps expanding and expanding, trying to accommodate everyone in that category, that every box eventually splits, rips open, and we are lost as to where the box starts and ends.

Are we thinking outside the box? Or are we still inside the box? Where are the boundaries? As a society, where do we go from here?

            Maybe that’s why everyone feels they need to be recognized; either be judged alone, or judged along with those they recognize with.

            Is there a solution?

            Don’t hide in your box; don’t objectify or define yourself.

            Because after all, where’s the growth when you’ve already defined yourself? Where can you go when you’ve already trapped yourself inside a box?

Generations:

According to http://genhq.com/generational_birth_years/

Traditionalists (1945 and earlier)

Baby Boomers (1946 – 1964)

Generation X (1965 – 1976)

Millennial Generation (1977 – 1995)

Generation Z (1996 – present)

 

LGBTQ+:

According to http://genhq.com/generational_birth_years/

Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer & Questioning, Intersex, Pansexual, Two-Spirit, Asexual, and Allies.

–  By Braydee Holmes,  Editor-In-Chief