Different or Disagreeable?
I was explaining my thoughts on a new acquaintance the other day, trying to choose my words carefully. I don’t dislike this person, but the more I get to know her, the more different I am determining we are. Some of the differences I find as odd traits in her, but as I said, nothing so far anyway I feel I should take a stand against. Just because someone has different tastes and preferences from me doesn’t make them wrong or a case for me to dislike them.
All this got me thinking about a former employer’s Diversity Program that was pretty much crammed down our throats for a few years. Their definition of diversity was “finding commonalities in our differences.” I always thought it was a silly definition since it contradicted itself. But that was only the beginning of my issues with the program which turned into company policy.
My attempt to explain my impression of this new acquaintance helped me see what my real problem with that “Diversity Program” was. I have no problem working with people different from me that I might have very little in common with. But I always felt that program was trying to force me to approve of other people’s differences (behaviors) that I disagreed with, like sexual orientation or other immoral lifestyle.
Diversity means different. Different is okay. Immoral is not.