Protests: Judging Others for Their Coping Mechanisms
For as long as recorded history can reach back, we have seen protests as part of human nature. Protests are accurately described by many to not only be a way of bringing positive change, but also an extremely valuable coping mechanism. As with any action, any opinion, or any thought, there will be those who judge others in ignorance for them.
It isn't fair, and it never will be unless we all make it so.
Protesting Is Coping
According to the Oxford Dictionary: To cope/the act of coping is to, "(of a person) deal effectively with something difficult."
It is in times where protests arise that I begin to lose faith in humanity, not because people decide to protest over things I don't agree with them on, no. I begin to lose faith in humanity because of the way people are so quick to judge one another without seeking to understand the other person(s). For many, protesting is a way to step off of the ledge, to take the barrel of a gun out of their mouth, or to remove the razor blade pressed against their wrist.
When someone is struggling, because of what they perceive to be an institutional problem, protesting could be one of the only ways they have to cope with such a serious issue. For example, as a child I once got pelted with eggs for holding up a picket sign during the grocery store protests. The men and women driving by hit me with those eggs, a child of no more than twelve, while screaming profanity that I cannot mention here.
What these ignorant imbeciles didn't know, my father was coping with losing his job by protesting, because at the time the stores had to pay reduced wages for those who came to protest on behalf of the unions. He had attempted to line up other work, but at the time everything was temporary for him and until something fell on his lap he was left to picket with the union lines. None of us really wanted to be there, our lives had been flipped upside down, we just wanted justice and for everyone to get their jobs back.
Sure, there are some who the media likes to focus on, the ones who are as ignorant as they are outspoken; but are you going to be prejudice and judge everyone based on a few idiotic individuals? Many are doing just that, and as such many people are losing my friendship. The time of prejudice and ignorance is long gone, time to step into the future people.
Do protests often have an immediate, detrimental effect on your life?
Stop Judging People
Unless you have sat down with someone in a quiet setting, had a conversation in which you sought to understand someone without prejudice and bias, then how do you feel you have any right to judge and generalize? Those of us on the sidelines, and even many of us out on the front lines of the protests, are simply trying to cope with unprecedented times and events. To be lumped in with the marginal amount of individuals that just want to cause trouble, by people who have the privilege to stay at home, now that hurts.
Rather than take what the media says and running with it, the same media you are willing to admit is constantly lying and trying to cause issues anyways, go and talk to a protester or twelve. Collect some actual data for yourself and see why people are actually out there doing these protests. I can guarantee you that you'll find that most people are simply out there for coping purposes.
No need to hate protesters when you're sitting safe at home, especially when you don't even have the gumption to ask every person why it is they are out there, risking their health in order to do it.