What is Equal?

In a dream where the dream was darkness I heard a voice that was both past and future, a disembodied voice that called for progress, prosperity, and equality in a place where only hatred grows.

The voice, reaching out to the chosen, became more voices, became a choir, became a din to drown out the cries…

A screenshot from the film Metropolis (1927).

A screenshot from the film Metropolis (1927). (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The chosen were willing to sacrifice those who were different from themselves…

The different were easy to identify, the voices said, for they looked different, spoke different, worshiped different, acted different, thought different…

Difference, the voices said, was akin to diversity and that was akin to chaos…

Chaos, the voices said, was what the masses would inflict upon the chosen, the prosperous, if the different were allowed to think for themselves…

We, the chosen, the voices said, shall build our Metropolis where all are welcome: the chosen, the workers, the slaves…

I awoke in a cold sweat, but with a sense of relief that still I had a choice. Still I could seek those of like mind, those who welcomed freedom and diversity and recognized that suppressing others diminished the human race.

Swinging my legs around, I left my bed and padded to the sink where I turned on the faucet to splash water on my face, but water came from my eyes instead.

I cried.

I cried because I realized that such people lurked not in our darkest dreams, nor did they hide in the darkness at all, but instead broadcast their voices beneath the sun.

I cried for everyone who wasn’t as equal as the chosen few.

I looked in the mirror and knew that “equal” applied to all or it applied to none.

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