• Thomas Lee 11th Chino Hills High

False Dichotomy of "Us" and "Them"

Updated: Oct 5, 2020

Humans are social animals, bearing multi-aspects of roles and relationships in the web of society. Consider a family setting as an example; one can be a father, a son, a husband, a brother, varied depending on the counterpart and its dynamics within a scope. While loving, trusting relationship can strengthen the ties and brings positive energy and sentiments, oppression and suffering also become the common outcome. Given this nature, the conversations on the subject of oppressed and suffering should not be revolved around by targeting particular groups or individuals. Such conversations should be addressed within a broader context, then consider if the relationship is based upon neutrality or hierarchy. As human history records, hierarchical mentality and structure divide human relationship from “oppressor” to “oppressed,” “us” to “them.” This project of becoming a voice for the unvoiced is not meant to finger point at certain “oppressor,” rather to broaden our perspectives to understand the complexity of systems that impose on various relationships to create chasms between fellow humankinds. Before we finger point at each other, let’s look into a broader web of relationship so we may address the issues adequately and fairly, for we all can become both the “oppressor” and the “oppressed.”


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