What does equality mean?

Does it mean that all humans are equal?

Or are some of us more equal than others? 

We were all born unique with unique markings such as fingerprinting and iris coding. Some of us were born to function differently. Some of us were born to look different.

So are we equal?

Are women equal to men?

Even though their physiology is so different from men. They can do things men simply cannot do. 

Are coloured people equal to non-coloureds?

Even though our skin colour is very different. 

Are Homosexual people equal to heterosexual people?

Although they all look the same but are attracted to the same gender. 

The lists go on with our differences. Yet we are all human. A sentient life form with intelligence and functionality. An intelligent life form that can love. Yet for some. Not equal.  

How can we base our judgement, whether someone is equal to us or not, based on a birth trait?  But then why are we judging in the first place! 

Coloured people fought long and hard to gain equality. A battle they should never have had to endure. In the end, for the most part, humanity sees them as equal. However, even now, there are some people that do not feel they are equal. I personally used to find this very upsetting, that a man or woman would consider the skin colour of another to be the catalyst of non-equality. I could not understand it. But I learned through my own journey just how the judgement of others was indeed the catalyst of non-equality. 

Woman fought for years for equality and finally got equal status in most of the world, and yet there are countries that still treat a woman as less than human, never mind less than equal. 

Homosexuals fought long and hard for their equality and finally were recognised as equal in most of the world. Although in contravention to the 17/19 act on human rights sexual orientation and gender identity, some countries still put humans in prison for loving another of the same gender. 

In our own great country, we voted on equality for homosexuals, strange but I don't recall the referendum in Ireland to make woman or coloureds equal, I think I may have been way too young. But our great nation went out and voted. And voted positively save for a minority. But it was the minority's vote that got me thinking. 

As I pondered on three-quarters of a million people in our small country did not deem me fit to hold equal status to other humans, that for me was upsetting.  For why would another human being deny me my birthright of being equal to them. It played on my mind and in my super sensitive state I went inward and became depressed. 

That emotion exasperated when I realised my best friend of 40 years, a man I had known since he was a child, a man I had shared love and life with, and loved more than life itself, shared their sentiment. 

He explained to me that I was not equal, because unlike him, I could not have children. In all the years I had known him and loved him, I never knew he could have children. I still don't think he can, but he seemed to think he could.

For me, the entire experience shook me to the core. So much judgement, so much fear and so much shame. 

Why as humans do we assume we are superior to others. Is it a genetic trait or a learned behaviour?

As I began to look at all areas of life, I began to observe equality issues in every facet of life. Or should I say non-equality? 

These non-equalities began to expose themselves everywhere I went as I observed the attitude of people. 

How some customers treat The waiter in the restaurant. The cashier at the local shop. The shelf stacker at The local supermarket. The sales assistant in the clothing store. For some, these people are beneath us, inconsequential. But these people are all equal to each and every one of us. 

It's interesting to watch the change in dynamics when people are dealing with bank staff, doctors, business executives or revenue officers. These people deserve no more or less respect than the cashier in the local shop. Yet, they are treated differently as if they are more superior. More Equal. Well, they are not!  Every human being, no matter their status, gender, colour,  creed or whether they can have babies or not, are equal. 

Perhaps it is time for each and every one of us to reflect inward on our own judgements and fears. Because judgement is based on fear and fear is based on shame. So what have we to be ashamed about? What skeletons are we hiding in the cupboard that drives the fear to drive the judgement? 

I will be writing on Shame and how it cripples our growth in adulthood shortly. 

But in the meantime let us consider all people in all walks of life, try not judge them, consider how you might be judged in similar situations and pause on that feeling of emotion. 

Live your life with an open Heart. A Heart that is Loving. Not just Loving to your family. But Loving to all of mankind. 

Be open to the possibilities. 

  • David Ellis