Existence is defined as the fact or state of living or having objective reality, especially independently of human consciousness and as contrasted with nonexistence. If a person is alive, the person exists.
As a matter of logic, existence is represented as follows:
Premise 1: All people who are alive exist.
Premise 2: Deric is a living person.
Conclusion: Therefore, Deric exists.
Though one may suspect it could go without stating, one will not assume too much. If you can read this post, you exist.
Claims regarding the existence of some people being terminated for little more than other people denying these favored identities (e.g., preferred pronouns) are illogical. As an example:
Premise 1: Anyone who denies your preferred pronouns causes you not to exist.
Premise 2: Person X denies your preferred pronouns.
Conclusion: Consequently, person X causes you not to exist.
If it were possible to erase a person’s existence by simply challenging their irrational beliefs, I would be guilty of the mass extermination of people simply through my practice of Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT). Such simply is not the case.
Accordingly, claims such as “[r]acial hatred denies our right to exist” are illogical and therefore irrational. Simply because person X hates person Y for nothing other than racial animosity doesn’t mean that person Y doesn’t exist.
Likewise, simply because person X favors Russia over Ukraine doesn’t mean that person Y, a Ukrainian, doesn’t exist. Hyperbole such as the claim, “[I]f we continue to exist here in Ukraine and are not wiped off the face of the planet by an enemy that increasingly seems not to be human” is irrational.
Not only is such exaggeration illogical, it dehumanizes a subset of people. Even this sort of dehumanization doesn’t result in the extermination of a subset of people. They exist despite the critique.
Perhaps the reader wonders, “Why write such an obvious assertion, Deric? Why not also claim that liquid water is wet while you’re at it?”
Over the years, I’ve observed a growing trend whereby people irrationally claim that anyone who disagrees with particular beliefs is guilty of denying a “right to exist.” Highlighting the issue inherent in the is-ought problem is thus necessary.
Herein, I’ve described what objectively is. Demanding what should, must, or ought to otherwise be is preposterous.
If you are alive, you exist. Simply because others disagree with you doesn’t mean you cease to exist.
If you’re looking for a provider who works to help you understand how thinking impacts physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral elements of your life, I invite you to reach out today by using the contact widget on my website.
As a psychotherapist, I’m pleased to help people with an assortment of issues ranging from anger (hostility, rage, and aggression) to relational issues, adjustment matters, trauma experience, justice involvement, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, and other mood or personality-related matters.
At Hollings Therapy, LLC, serving all of Texas, I aim to treat clients with dignity and respect while offering a multi-lensed approach to the practice of psychotherapy and life coaching. My mission includes: Prioritizing the cognitive and emotive needs of clients, an overall reduction in client suffering, and supporting sustainable growth for the clients I serve. Rather than simply helping you to feel better, I want to help you get better!
Deric Hollings, LPC, LCSW
Henry, C. (2022, May 18). Racial hatred denies our right to exist. Westside Gazette. Retrieved from https://thewestsidegazette.com/tag/racial-hatred-denies-our-right-to-exist/
Hollings, D. (2022, March 15). Disclaimer. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/disclaimer
Hollings, D. (n.d.). Hollings Therapy, LLC [Official website]. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/
Hollings, D. (2023, May 18). Irrational beliefs. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/irrational-beliefs
Hollings, D. (2023, January 8). Logic and reason. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/logic-and-reason
Hollings, D. (2022, March 25). Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT). Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/rational-emotive-behavior-therapy-rebt
Hollings, D. (2022, October 7). Should, must, and ought. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/should-must-and-ought
Hollings, D. (2022, December 14). The is-ought problem. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/the-is-ought-problem
Sennett, J. G. (2022, July 15). Existential right to exist. Retrieved from https://medium.com/the-ukrainian-view/existential-right-to-exist-892892d6c69b