GYPSY

Culture is misunderstood these days. It’s a paradox, really. Many people want to appreciate the diversity of culture yet want to make everybody into one generic type of person.

Confused? Allow me to explain.

Not all cultures are alike. If they were, there wouldn’t be cultures (plural), but one culture, and the term would lose its meaning.

For example, some cultures prefer to have men work outside of the home and women to stay at home and raise the children. If that rubs you the wrong way, and you wish to change those people to “think right,” you may be one of those folks who wants all cultures to be alike.

Let’s say another culture likes to eat rats on a day they call “Rat Eating Day.” Again, if you feel you have to change them, therein lies the err.

I don’t agree with all cultures. I also don’t wish to change them (as much as I may want to change them). It’s their culture, not mine.

The problem, as I see it, is that we are arrogant and self-righteous. We think our way is the best way and the only way. If someone does different, they must be stupid or evil. While that may be the case, it doesn’t mean it automatically is the case.

We need to listen with open ears and open minds. Perhaps our way is better. Perhaps it isn’t. Only an objective analysis of our opinion, by ourselves or others, will bring that to light. If our way is better, we need to know why it is better for humanity, not just for one person or a small subset of people.

And we need to understand Gypsies better.

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