How do those with whom we have no prior affiliation perceive us? It is impossible to know without some degree of acquaintance. Yet, new acquaintance, while providing rudimentary insight of how others perceive us, or how we perceive them, also changes such perception in the process. Is that good or bad? It could improve a bad first impression, or ruin a good first impression.
Good or bad, it is more accurate. To most of us, such accuracy is considered to be an asset. Accurate perceptions of others are useful for knowing who is trustworthy and who is not. Mistrust that is justified by accurate perception of character or experience is very different from a lack of trust of the unfamiliar. Conversely, justifiable trust of the familiar is earned with familiarity.
Sadly, some prefer to mistrust and fear the unfamiliar rather than attempt to determine if such mistrust and fear are even justified. For some, their potentially unfounded but very real fear is what prevents them from exploiting opportunities to become more acquainted and perhaps more comfortable with the sources of the same fear. Some merely lack opportunities to exploit.
What is worse is that there are a few who seem to crave mistrust and fear, regardless of their ability to engage sources of their mistrust and fear, and potentially dismiss unfounded threats. Although they do not likely live in constant fear, they claim to in order to justify their disdain for the sources of their alleged fear. They try to convince others that they should be fearful too.
The same accuracy of information that the logical sort employ to dispel unjustifiable mistrust and fear is an incumbrance to those who intently crave the same sort of mistrust and fear. They therefore and merely abstain from the use of accurate information.
It would be negligent to not share this update to a slightly earlier article about exactly what the title above describes. The topic is unpleasant, which is why it was not mentioned here sooner. Only these links are shared here, without associated text. The update links back to the original article.
Back in about 2013, it was much more socially acceptable to
discriminate against the homeless, anyone who looked homeless, or
just about anyone who could be implicated as an affiliate of the
homeless, whether or not such implication was accurate. Anyone
getting off a bus with a backpack might have learned how quickly
sheriff deputies responded to ‘multiple reports’ of someone
suspicious. How contrary to our formerly idyllic culture!
The animosity of a mere few for the homeless and their affiliates
is what justified the removal of all the barbecues and one of the
picnic tables from Felton Covered Bridge Park, and is why barbecuing
is now illegal there. Those who do not drink alcohol were often
accused of inebriation or worse. There were false accusations that
some homeless lived in tents in the riparian zone of the San Lorenzo
River within Felton Covered Bridge Park.
2013 was a long time ago. Not many remember the major hostility of
a minor group at that time. To the contrary, we remember the
remarkable and consistent generosity and civility of our Community.
After all, it is our Community that has always provided so much of
whatever we need, and for many of us, provided employment and homes.
The Community is why homelessness is much less of a problem than it
was six years ago in 2013.
Tomorrow will be Memorial Day. Yesterday was the annual Memorial Day celebration; Felton Remembers Parade and Covered Bridge Festival. Not many remember what should be memorialize on Memorial Day, but it was an excellent celebration nonetheless. Beer was sold from that navy blue tent amongst all those other tents. Freshly cooked and grilled food was sold next to the parking lot, out of view to the left of this picture. Beer, tents, grilled food and irony.