As I have thought about the unfair treatment of Shirley Sherrod, I remembered my post on Equality vs. Fair Treatment. In white racists and angry white male sympathizers’ attempts to show that they, too, are not racists, both groups immediately condemned Sherrod for what they believed was equal to the discrimination some whites have been guilty of. Every situation is unique. That’s why I believe being treated fairly, not equal, should always be the goal. Read this and tell me what you think.
I believe in fair treatment and less so in equality all across the board. This may sound strange, but I’ve thought about it for a while, and I know that I’d rather be treated fairly than equal to someone else because of the basic fact that I don’t need nor deserve what some others may have. See, if my parents had treated me and my siblings equal and not fairly, I wouldn’t have received a car that was required for an internship that I won; they would have had to buy them one, too. Or I would have been unable to use my parents’ credit card, like one of my other siblings who abused the use. When my 6th grade teacher compared me to my sister who she had the year before, my mama got her straight. “Don’t be comparing my babies. Rhonda learns differently than Sharon and you must accept who she is.” I want to be treated according to who I am (a unique child of God), what I do (my work wage should be based on my work not my race or gender), how I act (the righteousness of my personality), and what I need (regardless of what I think or how I act and the merits of each, I want God to give me what I need to develop the character to do what He needs me to do). To be treated equal is to be treated the same. To be treated fair is to be treated according to what you need. What we need, as Christians, is what God says we need. Fair treatment according to God’s standards is justice, and that’s what we should be striving for.
Originally posted March 6, 2009