Contrary to what you’re probably expecting from the title, I won’t be getting political today. Even though I have so much to say about a particular problem going on in our country, I will refrain from naming any names or bringing up any recent news headlines.
Instead, I want to talk about what it means to be an American, or a human for that matter.
Being alive, being a person, means that you have some kind of power. You have the ability to walk, to talk, to breathe. It means being able to help another person when they need it. It means being kind.
The word “kind” often gets misconstrued as a little gesture or phrase. Yes, opening the door for someone and words of encouragement are definitely kind gestures. But being truly kind is something greater than that.
Being kind means helping other people without any knowledge of who they are: their race, religion, sexual preference, gender, etc. It means knowing you have the power to do something completely and utterly wrong, and realizing that you should never do it. It means going out of your way to find solutions, well thought out solutions, that benefit more than a specific group of people.
Boundaries do nothing. All they prove to do is keep the good people out and make the bad ones try harder to get in.
Harsh words do nothing. They are hurtful and cruel. People aren’t motivated to do better when they’re constantly berated and put down.
Leaders must be unbiased and courageous. Leaders mustn’t hide behind walls or forms of mockery and immaturity. Leaders look at the entire picture, and see that there can always be different approaches to a problem.
Leaders shouldn’t be feared to such extreme levels. Leaders shouldn’t spark international protests, uproar and divisions.
In the state we are currently in, I don’t know where everyone stands. I don’t know what may come of us in this year or the next. But I do know that hate isn’t beaten with hate. Hate is the fuel to hate’s fire. It’s kindness and love and passion. We need more of it to wash away the chaos we’ve been engulfed by.
I don’t have an answer or a solution to the predicament we’re in. But I know that as people we all have a voice. A power. Together is always more than one.