Those on the Margins Often Have Greater Perspective
Attention is an unapologetic discriminator. To avert one’s gaze from a fellow human being erases that person’s existence. To lock eyes, even briefly, creates a connection, a validation that in this instance, we are here together. We turn our eyes away from what we think we shouldn’t see because it will embarrass us—or the other person. Opting to look into the distance when approaching another individual communicates “you don’t matter.” In contrast, looking/seeing and making eye contact with a colleague confers respect. Unfortunately, the privilege of being seen is not equally ...