How many times do you see a “real talk” Facebook post proclaiming “A real man is someone who…” or “a real fan would know…”? All the freaking time! Or how about the ever popular “You know you’ve found the one when…”?
What is this generation’s obsession with generalizations?!
Guilty. See what I just did? I just made a generalization about this generation of people. What I actually want to convey is: Why do I, so often, see generalizations being made?
The fact is that everyone is different. C’mon, this is stuff you should have learned in kindergarten, precious snowflake. But I feel like many people need the reminder that no two people are exact mental and physical clones of each other. That stuff only exists in the two-dimensional, fictional, sci-fi universe.
That being said, let’s examine a phrase that’s been irking me for some time now:
“Everyone is beautiful”
If this were true, that would mean that those yellow pee-covered snowflakes are beautiful, just like those blackish grey snowflakes that have been contaminated by months of car exhaust….hear me out.
Some people say this in reference to inner beauty (i.e. the mind or the heart) while others use it to refer to physical beauty.
So starting with inner beauty: there are some shitty people in the world. I’m talking about fully aware mass murderers of the innocent or people who hold dog fights for pleasure and financial gain. Not everyone is all Nutella and sunshine on the inside. But you see, that is my (one, single person’s) opinion on the matter. Maybe you don’t agree with me?
Well my friend, that is because beauty is a relative term. Which leads me to the second half of this examination. Physical beauty is also relative. For example, my fiancé thinks that Ryan Reynolds is one of the sexiest men alive, while I think he’s just “meh”. Petty example, I know, but I think you get the point. I understand that the phrase “everyone is beautiful” can be very motivational, inspirational, and just a great way to teach your kids about respecting others – but it’s also a lie. A more accurate statement would be “everyone can potentially be seen as beautiful by someone” or else, “not everyone will find you beautiful” – but to put that a little gentler: “beauty is in the eye of the beholder”.
Human beings are all different. Thus we naturally argue, disagree, and ultimately make different decisions that come to comprise our unique and individual lives. When people make generalizations I often think “uneducated” or “ignorant”… despite the good intentions.
But let’s be respectful of the truth and carry with us the knowledge that to generalize is to create a fiction; and people who make generalizations should put those ideas towards writing fictional worlds and fictional people, because they don’t belong in the real world, they belong in fairy-tale land.