We Don’t Know Why

I heard on radio this morning that a woman without legal documents in France had to work as a prostitute to make a living. I then saw a man in a subway train, where he walked from one end to another all alone and dirty, while making weird noises along the way that disturbed some of the passengers in the same space. Many people, including me, tend to look at these two types of people through a pair of disdainful lenses. We look down on them, because we are brainwashed into thinking people, who are like them, are lazy, crazy and dirty. We are taught by the mainstream elite culture to pose questions, such as why are they selling their bodies for money? Why are they not getting themselves all cleaned up so that they can get an “actual” job?

Why? and why? We have to be honest with ourselves that we don’t know why, because our privileges shield us from being in their shoes. We don’t know the exact hardship that pushed the lady, heard on the radio, into prostitution. We don’t know the exact reasons why the dirty-clothed man in the subway train decided to make himself as the cause of public disturbance; maybe he was just seeking some kind of human connection in a world, where he felt abandoned and left behind.

We, who are not in an obvious socially and financially disadvantageous position, like to judge those, who are perceived to be at a lower rank, stereotypically speaking. Our judgment makes us come across as self-righteous and unsympathetic. At the end of the day, everyone of us is doing our best to make a living for our family and I in this dog-eat-dog world.

Published by Robbie's Blog

I am a third-culture person who's navigating his way around Hong Kong and beyond. Come join me on this rollercoaster ride.

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