Demand Mental Health Equality Now
Those of us with mental health issues are treated like a third class within society, we are consistently looked down upon as people with fewer abilities than others.
As someone who struggles every day with mental health issues I understand how much of a battle life can be. The day to day activities that other people find easy, are not that way for me.
Like Einstein said; “Everyone is a genius, but if you judge a fish on its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”
Every day people with mental health issues are being judged in that same way. The person who society judges cannot cope with mundane day to day tasks can often have excellent abilities in other areas that are unappreciated.
How many great artists, geniuses or mathematicians have been unrecognised, so they have rotted away in mundane work? Even worse they will drown in unemployment when deep inside they have a calling for true greatness, and could contribute huge amounts to society with their own unique talents.
(Trailer from "A Beautiful Mind", the biographical tale of Mathematician genius John Nash.)
Society repeatedly leaves people who are different out in the cold. All you need to do is look at statistics of any country and you will find within unemployment, poverty, suicide, debt, homelessness and alcoholism; a disproportionate number of people who have mental health issues. Society does not help these people. They become increasingly marginalised as they go further and further into the fringes in order just to cope and survive.
Each individual has limitless potential if given the right help and support. Ultimately societies failure to capture this potential and help it grow is societies own loss. We all lose every time someone who could have given their special genius is lost in this sheer waste of possibility.
Until the core root of conformity is changed, until diversity is embraced, until we see difference as strength, there will always be someone on the outside.
Rarely is the ability to conform a mark of true intelligence; and the highest rewards in our backwards society always gravitate towards those who have the greatest ability to conform and do what they are told.
Not only is this fact morally wrong but also upside down. It results in a society of people who are miserable as they find the freedom to be themselves meaningless and their own unique ability is not appreciated.
Not only does society reward conformity but it also consistently rewards the most selfish behaviour of those amongst us. Just look at how society is structured, look at those who are the wealthiest financially. They are those who have the ability to be the most self-serving, this behaviour is consistently rewarded. Yet on the other side of the spectrum those who are the most selfless and caring receive the least material rewards. They are punished for this behaviour by society to teach us that greed is good.
Children growing up learn that this is normal, this forms the thinking of our future generations, forging a new society in the image of greed and self-interest. In many senses society consistently educates us that conformity is the only way, for those who choose to not conform; they are either punished or left isolated and alone, on the outside looking in.
This type of conformity is highly organised and enforced primarily by the state and corporations and the tiny elite who control this highly unequal world.
What we as a people must become aware of is, this is not the main power behind the control system of conformity, we are. We are all programmed to be part of the security system that keeps it running. Every time you look at someone and see difference instead of uniqueness, you are feeding this system.
Over years, you have been programmed to be a gatekeeper for them, to keep this system of oppression strong and alive. The kindest of people are mistakenly part of this cruel system. It is time that we waken up and no longer be pawns for those who seek to oppress us.
People are not cookies, and they cannot be shaped by giant state based cookie cutters. People are emotional and intellectual entities of great uniqueness and power. Until this idea has true value, people will suffer unmeasurable pain.
How many people have been treated badly because they are different? When you are on the receiving end of societies intolerance the world can seem like a very cold and harsh place. We must move beyond survival of the fittest, and move towards caring for each other. Life is not a game or a competition. We should not be forced to outdo each other in order to survive. What right does society itself have to treat anyone in this way? Just because we are not the same?
Whether it is other people looking at you as if you have limited or no potential, or an employer ending your contract early; mental health bigotry isn’t always obvious in society. Especially with those who have little personal experience of it as a fact.
The change must come from within us, the people, not the state, not government, not corporations. As individuals we need to alter how we perceive reality in this sense, and this is something each of us can do through a sense of awareness. We need to make it so we are no longer the gatekeepers and enforcers of something we do not believe in.
It doesn’t have to be this way, we need to reach out to each other in diversity and help each other. If we all do this, it will come back to you when you need it.
If we build a community that is inclusive of everyone, that change is there for everyone. If you ever find yourself alone, the community will back you, as you backed them.
If you believe in equality, be equality first, if you be the society you need, the society will be what you need. We can create a better world, that is for everyone, not one person left outside, not one person left alone.
Humanity, united in diversity.
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