Before I begin to start this article I should explain this is simply my own ramblings on the subject rather than any well researched academic piece. However, as I was searching for a suitable feature image I quickly read that under Christian belief that Pride was one of the 7 deadly sins, and that is a good starting point.
Pride is seen as self-promotion and a trait that can easily lead to arrogance but I believe Pride when properly defined is very positive as it is an expression of the inner satisfaction with where they are in life. The church may oppose pride because if people are confident within themselves as individuals then they may no longer seek solace in God, and therefore their power over them and the larger society is lost, and this is exactly what we have seen.
For myself, Pride has been a key coping mechanism in establishing my self-identity as someone with significant cerebral palsy. My impairment, particularly my speech impairment, drooling and spastic movements, has the potential to provide low self-worth in a mainstream setting. A youthful unawareness and denial common in many active and aware people with cp seems to overcome this through a natural development of pride.
Pride is, therefore, a cornerstone of developing a personality that shines beyond and compensates for physical appearance. If Pride is frown upon in this context then it is because it has subverted the perceived natural order of society that keeps people with impairments and others in their place. This is why the Gay Pride movement has had a stronger influence than other forms of protest because it shows a self-satisfaction of identity as opposed to playing the victim which is more frustrating to its prejudiced audience.
Pride works when it values diversity and freedom, where someone is saying they are happy with who they are without imposing it on others. Identity politics does not always stay in this realm and it is when pride is used to proclaim superiority against other people that problems arise. This is when Pride becomes arrogance and can be an ugly trait that is currently common in younger people where their expression of identity is regarded as a significant political statement.
However, Pride can remain an expression of satisfaction which should be worked towards. Many individuals do not understand their personal journey and story because they have been pushed to conform to the expectations of others like family and peers, and even when they do, they may not be following it. Pride can, therefore, be seen as an expression of being on track with their journey and the liberation to themselves it brings.
We should have pride in the notion of pride as self-identity in a diverse world. It can lead to arrogance and trouble with others but it does not have to if we teach people from an early age the power of pride and how best to use it.
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