The other night, I went to a debate on the motion “This House would be a Hufflepuff and Proud” in my college. The debate itself was all in jest, but under all of the comedy, the debate struck a nerve with me, as all conversations about the houses of Harry Potter do – I was left wondering why the house of Hufflepuff is mocked, almost always because it values the trait of ‘niceness’. Why is niceness mocked in our society and at what point did we stop valuing it?
Disputed in the debate were the common characteristics of Hufflepuff: patience, loyalty, kindness and modesty. The basis of the opposition’s argument was that those who are Hufflepuff should not be proud – especially of such boring traits. I think the perception that these traits are common, has become that they are also normal and boring.
Why is it boring to be patient? I aspire to be a patient person, but I have the temper of a toddler. I can’t say the same about loyalty and modestly, but I do believe that they should be just as valued. When describing an ideal fried or partner, you’d never heard anyone saying “Well, I want a DISLOYAL partner. Loyalty is outdated”. The same goes for modesty, as people say “confidence is attractive, conceit isn’t”. As I see it, the traits of Hufflepuff are ones to be sought after.
Many a time in my life have I been told I am “nice”, and, to be honest, I used to view the words ‘nice’ and ‘boring’ as interchangeable when describing a person. This seems to be the common interpretation of being “nice”. I’ve grown up and into the word now, and I can see there is nothing boring about my kindness at all. My modesty won’t prevent me in acknowledging the fact that I’m nice and kind, and not boring. It’s not cool to be unkind, and that’s something a lot of people seem to have forgotten.
Kindness is a thing of which I consider myself an expert. Not because I myself am kind, but because being a wheelchair user really allows you to see the best and worst of people. I don’t want to focus on the bad in this post, because that really is a story for another day. People go out of their own way to help me out on a daily basis. And, I really just can’t properly express how it brightens my life. I value kindness above every other trait, and I really do believe it’s something everyone should strive for in their daily lives. I can only hope people appreciate me in the way that I do them.
If there is anything in this world that is to be valued, it’s kindness and consideration. And, honestly, they’re traits that just not everybody has.