Friday, January 29, 2021

Teacher Tom: Disarming

Teacher Tom: Disarming

There was once a time when I felt I always had to don my armor to go out into the world. You know what I'm talking about it, of course: everything from the clothing to the attitude that I wear when I leave the safety of home. It's the way we protect ourselves from a world that we fear will harm us if it sees who we really are.

The hostility of the world is real. Black people better protect themselves in America. Gay people too. Difference, or otherness, be it based on skin color, sexuality, ethnicity, gender, ability, neurotype, or whatever other arbitrary dividing line, makes one an especially likely target. One might think that old, straight white men would have the least need for armor in our world, yet it seems that ours also weighs heavily on our shoulders.

The problem with armor, of course, is that it means we're all walking around as armed people, protective, defensive. Some go so far as to arm themselves with offensive weapons, say the aggressive trappings of toxic masculinity, but most of us CONTINUE READING: Teacher Tom: Disarming