What if You Don’t Fit in With Being Different?

Written by Deborah Fillman

A Gen Z Voice Speaks Out


Margo Margen (not her real name) would like your attention please, Monday, November 20th at 7 PM Eastern, on The Reason We Learn YouTube channel, for the Premiere of our conversation about what it’s like when you don’t fit in with being ‘different.’

You’ll notice she is asking politely, because unlike many of her generation who simply demand attention, Margo has gone through the rather painful process of unlearning what her school tried to teach her, so she knows neither she, nor anyone else, has a “right to be heard.”

I encourage you to grant her this audience though, because she has an important story to tell us all, her Gen Z peers especially. She will share what it was like to have history and English classes focus almost exclusively on the race or ethnicity of historical figures, characters, and authors, as well as how frustrating it was to leave class each day feeling like every conversation you’ll have with anyone is, and should be, a social minefield. 

We will hear how endless repetition of the same narratives and themes was not only boring, but also sent a clear message: there are correct and incorrect ways of thinking and “knowing,” and those must critique and deconstruct historical ‘norms.” Rather than learning about reality, and how to live life in it, Margo learned that

men, especially white men, are oppressive;

women, especially “of color,” are always oppressed;

LGBTQIA+ people are in perpetual danger;

only some “identities” are allowed to speak about certain topics, and others must shut up and listen when they do;

your race, sexuality, and mental health define you and how others should treat you.

Additionally, Margo will help us all better understand the ways in which students themselves leverage, and weaponize the new AB-normal. We tend to think of our children as victims of woke adults, but rarely stop to consider the amount of power other children and teens have in the spaces they inhabit and frequent. If you are concerned about “socialization,” you will want to hear what Margo has to say about

GSA clubs;

pronouns & Flags;


book challenges.

This show is for you if you’ve ever wondered what it’s really like to attend a postmodern “woke” private school from 8th through 12th grade, or walk through life in general believing that everyone is either an oppressor, or oppressed.

If you have a Gen Z child still in high school or college, please encourage them to tune in as well because Margo is especially eager to reach more of her own peers in the hope that her story will spare them the pain of loneliness, shame, and regret associated with the maladjustment manufactured in today’s educational institutions and culture.

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Show Preparation: Questions to Think About From Margo

Have you seen similar practices happening?

Has the idea of teaching “representation” overtaken common subjects like English, History, or even Math and Science?


Have you ever noticed an emphasis on suspecting ambiguous media characters to be gay or trans, and/or called homophobic for denying this?


Has cultural appropriation been talked about? What has been accused of “appropriation?” Do people of color from older generations treat this the same way younger generations do?


Have policies like dress codes been relaxed out of a perceived bigotry in their rules?


Has mental health been used as an excuse to prevent addressing students’ bad behavior or failing grades? Have any students with genuine mental health issues been falling through the cracks?


Have student protests happened? Is this becoming more prevalent?


What language has been restricted? What is the most bizarre language restriction you’ve seen?


Have you seen worksheets like identity wheels?


Have any students expressed discomfort or shown distress from these norms? Has anyone come to you asking to confide in someone about their dissents?


Have you seen objections from those in minority groups? I used to think I might have been pansexual, but didn’t want to say anything out of a fear my classmates would over-celebrate me. I also bristled at any “women’s groups” that came up. With everyone else from an older generation where less praise and more discrimination was present, it’s hard to relate to many and easy to blame yourself. I’m particularly curious if others within the groups this activism targets have felt just as confused or even harmed by it.


What would you say to a young person that feels threatened by your points of view?


Are there any parts of “woke” culture that you do agree with?


We talk a lot about rejecting ideologies we find problematic. Instead of what we don’t want, I like to think about this: What would a world with good ideals look like?


What is your “identity?” If asked, are you able to think of answers beyond the social groups promoted by the current climate? I sometimes hesitate on this myself.

Original Work by Margo Margen:



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