This started as a response to the news and ended up somewhere else completely.
| Another day, another sad news story. Another example of how hate is permeating our culture. Another instance where we will show outrage for a few days and then nothing will really change, because as a people we have become complacent with our hate. We show blind outrage when this hate is directed from âforeignersâ but when it is one of our own, somehow we give them a pass and move on. People blame race, religion, mental health and whatever else they can to deny the truth. We lack basic compassion. Compassion isnât just about and extended to people like us. To be compassion it must extend to those we donât understand, people who are different than us. That is what is at the heart of compassion.
Our society, the human society, has come a long way over the millennia. We didnât get here today by only being out for ourselves. We didnât get here by only caring about people like us. If we had, we surely wouldnât be here today. Our civilization would have toppled long ago. We need each other. Our differences are what further us as a people. Our varying beliefs, abilities, personalities, and our uniqueness is what makes us beautiful and what should make us work together beautifully. Our society is like a work of art. Each individual is an integral part of the whole picture. Every single person matters.
I am not just speaking of one issue. It really is the mass of issues that we face as a nation and as a world. How do we expect to still be here in 200 years when we canât seem to think about anybody other than ourselves, or people that we have deemed as like us? We use the earth like we are children who run into a room and throw around all the toys and refuses to pick up after themselves, expecting someone else to do the job. We treat our brothers and sisters like they are replaceable when they become difficult. We treat our beliefs like they are so right that we are unflinching when somebody challenges us with a different perspective. We discount their journey, their reasons, their being. We discount them. We use our religions and ideologies as a bat to bash others different from us into the neat little box of what we see as right. We stopped caring that it is okay to disagree. We forgot how to compromise. We use exclusion as a tool to shape what we see into what we want to see. We have somehow lost the sense of individuality and its importance.
We too easily forget that other people matter. We forget that when a stranger across the country hurts and aches, that it hurts the bigger picture and in turn us too. We forget that we all matter, that we are all connected. We too often take the easy route, foregoing the slightly more difficult, more prosperous route, the route that benefits more. We walk around with blinders on to the pain around us, because to take them off might be too much to stomach.
We stick so blindly to what we think we know that it leaves no room for the bigger picture to come into view. We focus so hard on our advancement that we forget that if we donât bring others with us we will be all by ourselves. We can explore the universe and discover wonders we never dreamed of, but we forget to think about the child who is going hungry, the mother who aches with loss, the man who is trying but needs a hand, the young people who have become bitter because of what we have done to them and this world.
We have forgotten our compassion. We have forgotten where we come from. We have forgotten the bigger picture. We have forgotten that all our actions matter, that everything we do touches somebody else, somehow. We have forgotten to celebrate our differences, to recognize and celebrate journeys different than our own. We forgot to hold other peopleâs opinions and beliefs as just as important as our own. We have forgotten what it means to be inclusive. We have forgotten what it really means to be good.
My heart aches for this loss. I grieve for where I see us headed. I weep because I cannot change this path we are headed down on my own. I fear that I wonât be heard. Iâm angry that others donât see this too. I want to scream,â Wake up! Donât you see what you are doing?!â Iâve been silent for too long.
Be better. Want better. Hope for better. Call for change. Be loud! Whatever you do, donât forget that we are all people. We all have hopes and dreams, loss and grief, we all ache for things and all have beliefs and feelings.
Be compassionate, change the world.