From the day we are born we learn about our world by our surroundings. We learn from those around us; our family, friends, peers, teachers, etc. We pick up habits, traditions, and even beliefs from others. But one day we hopefully figure out who we want to be, think for ourselves (not necessarily just following the crowd), and that means we may come to see some things differently than what others may see as “normal.”
Because certain things in our surroundings/society are seen as “normal”, people don’t necessarily think about what they say, assuming everyone feels the same as they do.
An example of this is recently a delivery person who was bringing supplies to my place of employment started talking to me about how he was recently out bear hunting. I immediately tensed up. He went on to give me details about how it wasn’t easy but he got him. He explained how he set the traps and had to travel quite far to pursue him. He was so proud of this. All the while he is telling me this I am thinking “do I tell him I do not want to hear this?” and “do I tell him that I am an animal advocate and that I care about all living beings?”
I decided not to say anything but to let him talk. I did not engage or give much response back hoping he would get the hint that the isn’t something I want to talk about. I had to decide if it was a good idea to cut him off and possibly start something. I didn’t think it was the right time to do that.
It seems you do not get anywhere, make any real impact, or make someone change their mind by arguing with them, yelling at them, condemning them, or shoving your beliefs down their throat. If there is an opportunity to respectfully have a discussion to share my beliefs and love for animals with this delivery guy, I will.
I think the key is respecting one another whether it be about animals, politics, or religion. How I see things isn’t the same way everyone sees things. I see that bear as a living being who was created by God and has the right to live out his life the same as we do. I do not believe he or any animals were put here for us to harm. I believe we do because it is seen as “normal.” But what is seen as “normal” does not necessarily mean it is right.