The difference

Because I am a white male in this country, there are some who would tell you, I could not possibly know what it is like to be discriminated against, but that simply is not true. I am a member of one of the most discriminated against minorities in the world. I am left-handed. Before you laugh, give me a few minutes and I will explain.

We live in a world designed for right-handed people. Even when something is invented by a left-handed person, when it goes into mass production, it is altered to favor the right-handed. From simple things like scissors to complex industrial equipment, everything is designed to be used right-handed. Musical instruments are all designed for right-handed people, and while a few stringed instruments can be reconfigured for left-handed players, most cannot.

Even sports, an area in which I’m told lefties have an advantage, are designed for the right-handed. The entire layout of baseball favors the right-handed player, from lefties having to turn before running to first base, to playing the infield. As one of the very rare left-handed shortstops in Little League, I was harassed and belittled during road games, even being targeted because, “No leftie can play shortstop.”

But the real discrimination was yet to come. If you’ve been in the military, you’ve no doubt seen the unfortunate leftie coming off the range with burns on his neck and right arm from the hot brass being ejected toward him from a weapon designed to be used by a right-handed soldier.

A Harvard study conducted in 2014 indicates that the average salary of lefties is 10 to 12% lower than right-handed people, even though other studies have found there are more left-handed people with IQs over 140 than right-handed people. Every year, more than 2,500 left-handed people are killed around the world from using the equipment that is meant for right-handed people. That doesn’t count the ones injured by this discrimination.

Here’s the difference between us left-handed people and other minorities. We don’t whine about being called southpaw or protest our treatment, or even lobby to remedy the disparities. We go out and compete and win. We play by the rules set forth by the evil oppressive righties and beat them at their own game. We earn the respect we desire rather than demanding it just be given to us. And guess what, it works.

Paul Rinker


Submitted by Virtual Newsroo