Once Upon a Time

Journal page number…

Just my opinion…

So much noise

So much activism

So much pointing of fingers

So little love

At the end of this chapter

How will the story read

I believe that nobody will win

And there will be no happy ending

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If an act is done out of love, but requires an act of hate or violence to accomplish it, how does that work out?

I believe we call it war.

And we are fighting ourselves.

All Shouting at Once

This journal page was done yesterday.

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And then today, I witnessed yet another disturbing incident on facebook.

A friend posted an opinion on another friend’s post.

A differing opinion.

And she was attacked.

Hateful vitriol.

There is no other word for it.

And she wasn’t wrong.  Her comment had merit.

It just wasn’t the “popular” thing to say.

It brought light to the fact that the issue is not black and white.

There is no easy answer.

And I have to wonder…

Where is conversation?

Where is discussion?

Where is respect?

And in this instance, where is the Christianity?

Have your opinion.  Have a strong opinion.  Believe you are right…

March, gather, protest, follow your heart and work for change.

But never forget that the person you are sharing words with

OR

throwing words at…

Has an opinion.

And is a living, breathing, feeling human being…

With their own story and beliefs.

What about being quiet for a moment and listening…

Where is the love that you profess to have for humanity when you can’t treat a differing opinion with respect and dignity?

And all that I can think and believe is that when hate is the response to a differing opinion there is no winner.

We all lose.

Love loses.

Peace.

 

Unfriended

“Unfriended” – is that even a word?  I suppose it is because it happened to me…on facebook.  Today.

Honestly, I’m the type of person who just wants everyone to like me.  Insecurity?  I don’t know what it is, but I get really upset when I realize that someone doesn’t like me.  I immediately start to question my behavior, my attitude, myself – and conclude that I must have been in the wrong.

This time, that didn’t happen.  Maybe I’ve been making progress in silencing my negative critic. Maybe I’ve changed a bit in the last year and am more confident in who I am.  In looking over what happened to cause this “unfriending”,  I don’t regret what I said.  In fact, I don’t even think that I should have remained silent.

In short, she posted an inflammatory comment and I responded.  She was offended. She suggested that I unfriend her.  I replied that I don’t unfriend friends because we don’t agree 100% on something.  She unfriended me.

I don’t want to turn this blog into a rant on controversial topics.  I try my best to be a kind, considerate individual who respects everyone.  I may not agree with you.  There may be subjects we agree to disagree on.  There may even be topics that we mutually agree to never broach.

Am I perfect? Hell No!  Do I have my share of prejudices?  Yes.  We all do.   I love this quote from Holy Cross Primary School in North Belfast Ireland for that very reason:

If we had been born where they were born and taught what they were taught we would believe what they believe.

I try to be open-minded and think (and re-think) through issues.  There are times I find it necessary to redefine what I believe and there are some things that I stand by steadfastly.

I believe we live in a scary world where bad shit happens.  Sad, tragic events that leave me afraid, depressed and weary.

And I firmly believe that the journalists (and their corporations) can be biased and exploitive.  Bad news sells better than good news.  They are in a rush to break a story and by the time all the facts emerge, it’s old news and we never hear of it.

I also know that we live in a world where good is happening…all the time.  Change is occurring.  Slowly.  But, we’ll rarely see it featured in the media.

People are complex, glorious creations.  We will never agree on everything…and we shouldn’t.  I wouldn’t care to live in a world where individuality was sacrificed on the altar of conformity.

I believe in human rights.  There are some things that all should have…life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness come to mind.  But…you can’t provide someone their human rights by taking away the rights of someone else.  That would be like building up someone by criticizing someone else.  Equality is equality.  It must be balanced and fair for all involved.

I believe in the American dream.  But that was founded on the precept that you work for what you get.  No one handed those first pioneers anything.  They struggled and worked for it.  Some succeeded.  Some didn’t.  Life isn’t fair.  Bad shit happens.  To all.  There are good times…and bad.  If you’re looking for perfect…being a human being may have been the wrong choice.

I believe in one race.  The human race.  It’s what I write on every form I fill out.  Race?  Human.  I’ve had a clerk tell me that’s an incorrect answer.  I replied that it was the only answer.

I could go on and on citing specific situations and offering my opinion, but I think I’ve said enough.  In short, we all have our opinions and there are going to be differences in our thinking.  Sometimes it’s a good thing to keep our mouth shut.  Sometimes it’s important to stand up for what we believe in.

My opinion will occasionally be expressed here.  That’s probable.  I hope it will always be well thought out and rational.  But…I have been know to mess up…a lot.

I don’t want to live in a bubble where everyone around thinks the same way I think and believes the same way I believe.  Diversity is a beautiful thing.

Let’s agree to this…if something is ever written here that bothers you or that you disagree with strongly…let’s discuss it.  Let’s see if we can meet in the middle or agree to disagree.  The world needs more friendship, more conversation, more civilized debate, more open-mindedness, more positive interactions…

“Unfriending” is not the answer.