Transcendentalism Today: Equality

Transcendentalism, a philosophical and social movement, greatly altered and established a new way of life for citizens worldwide. It promotes the freedom of expression, individuality, peace and simplicity of life. Each of these have slowly become more accepted into the building blocks of society over time. Despite this, there are still occurrences that may prove to be unjust in the eyes of a transcendentalists today.

One of these major issues can be simply described as, the lack of equality. The lack of equality has been a recurring issue throughout time, since the beginning. Along with these issues, came advocates that stood for what they believed in and fought against it. Although there are many, Martin Luther King seems to have made the greatest impact relative to our society today. King felt that “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere”, which also served towards reasoning for his strong beliefs in equality. The type of inequality he dealt with around this time period happened to be racial.

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Segregation was on the rise and began to be accepted by citizens nationwide, primarily the white community. African Americans were completely stripped of their human rights. The freedoms they lacked did not enable them to express themselves or to serve in the community as equal individuals, caused them to be looked down upon as a whole. However, with the countless efforts and intellect of Martin Luther King, society began to realize that the concept of segregation was indeed unjust. Because King did not conform to the ways of his surrounding community, African Americans are able to express themselves freely, experience full transcendentalism.

Today, society is riddled with non-equality. It dwells in several social issues, such as bullying at school, gay rights, immigration laws and leads into a far more extensive list. For centuries, parts of the world have fought to be equal, so the fact that these wars, although smaller in magnitude, are still being fought in our community is nothing other than unacceptable. These equalities even racial discrimination today, still seem to do harm to the society as well, sometimes even physical. For example, on September 2, 2013, a man in Cleveland, Fox, was accused of being gay.

In a world of transcendentalism, this would oppose no issue. Regardless of this, the mob of young men approached Fox and began to beat him ruthlessly all while screaming hateful gay slurs. Fox tried to escape but was pulled to the ground and pummeled a second time by the mom of men. Minutes later he managed to escape into a nearby bar, badly injured. The most amazing fact about this occurrence however, seems to be Fox’s attitude towards the men after the attack as he states, “I have no hatred for them, I just hope they change their hurtful ways.” This immediately allows us to relate fox to the ways of transcendentalism.

Rather than focusing on himself, he still shares concern for the group of men that he was previously assaulted by. It is by spreading this concept of transcendentalism, that we can prevent hate crimes against certain individuals and ultimately encourage the respect of all citizens in society for simply being an individual. By spreading transcendentalism, we could educate society in the concept selflessness, peace and overall equality. Once each individual recognizes and exhibits these concepts completely, peace and equality will, in fact, be accomplished. These goals are marked by the Equality Federation. The Equality Federation serves as an organization for building and developing equality across the nation.

They also aid in the construction of safer schools, putting an end to discrimination and protecting or supporting less privileged families. This Federation has been actively fighting for equality since 2010 and has already provided for and benefited the community in several ways. All it takes to support their fight for what can be seen today as, just, a small donation can be placed on their website.