New from The Journey – adifferentkindofstorybook
My mom and dad never taught our family to hate others. They taught us that good and evil AREN’T by-products of skin color, but by-products of the heart. Those by-products are taught! Many, MANY people are concerned about the results of our recent Presidential election. America has been walking on egg shells for the past 300 years or so, concerning racism, segregation and discrimination. I tell the participants in my drug court group, that you can’t fix something; until you know what IT is. Perhaps it’s time for America to bring these issues to the table and face them once and for all. My mentor and friend, Dr. Pascal Baute, asked me to write a story about this topic. Here’s my interpretation of what just happened to America.
A couple of hundred years ago, in a faraway land, a mighty beast roamed the country side. It was an enormous creature that had tusks and huge ears. It thought too highly of itself and didn’t get along with the other animals. It considered itself to be superior to ALL other creatures. Due to its size, not many challenged it, so it did and said anything it wanted. One day it decided to cross over to the other side of a BIG pond to see what was on the other side. The beast set sail and began its journey. When it finally arrived at its destination, it noticed how much smaller the native inhabitants were. Moreover, the natives only had sticks to defend themselves against this enormous beast who had TUSKS! It didn’t take long for the inhabitants to be overrun. Conquest tasted pretty-good to the beast, so it decided to expand its hate to other lands. Once again, it set sail. After another long journey, it arrived at the shores of a dark continent. It was greeted by the local inhabitants. The beast noticed that they, too, only had sticks, so it quickly began to subjugate them. It quickly realized that if it captured them, then it could take them back home, enslave them and put them to work.
The beast began rounding up the locals and putting them in chains. He stuffed them into the bottom of his ship, and when the ship was full, it set sail for home. Along the way, a great number of them died due to the filthy living conditions aboard the ship. When they arrived on the shores of their new home, the slaves were branded with hot irons, sold like cattle and put to work. This went on for two centuries. During those two centuries, other animals began to speak out against the way their fellow citizens were being treated. It got so bad that they even fought a war! After the war was over and the voices of freedom reigned, the beast was no longer allowed to roam the countryside and spread its message of hate and fear! After all, hate often springs up from fear. The new leaders of the land were aware that they couldn’t abolish hatred, however, they could try to contain it. Laws were created to prevent hatred from openly harming or intimidating others. But it didn’t stop it from existing in their homes – and their hearts. The enormous beast was reduced in size and forced to stay in its own yard, but it still existed. For the next four or five decades, most of society chose to avoid and ignore the beast. I don’t see how ignoring it fixes it! When the beast decided to resurrect itself, it was met by protest and violence. Once again, it was defeated on the public stage, but allowed to continue in its own home.
By now, the enormous beast had built up a following and it wasn’t going down without a fight! Society began referring to the beast as being in their living rooms. When family members, friends or neighbors got together, they now found themselves walking around this huge creature, but NO ONE acknowledged it being there. The creature went out in the streets and waved its flag and stood behind its belief that it had the right to feel the way it did towards others. I say, “just because you have the right, doesn’t make it right!” One thing that I have found that fuels hated and prejudice is FEAR! A person’s skin color can be an easy identifier. I happen to believe that color has nothing to do with anything! Hated and fear come in all colors and they are taught! Love and kindness come in ALL colors, too. You can’t do much about your color.
Nearly two decades into the new century, the beast sent one of his followers out into the land. Its purpose was to pour an accelerant onto a simmering hate with cruel and harmful words. Its hope was that hate and fear would trump love and kindness. Society was given a choice. Sadly, the beast won. That beast was now set free from the private living rooms of society to roam wherever it saw fit!
Many were surprised – even shocked – and disappointed by the results. However, facing this cancer was long, long overdue. I am a person of HOPE. I CHOOSE to find positive outcomes wherever possible. If you see the glass half full, then you’ll recognize the opportunity to expose it and finally remove it.
Problem was, that society had also evolved past sticks. They were NOT going to be taken captive or enslaved again. They were not going BACK to the old days with their old ways! Their land was already GREAT! Four decades earlier, the world was faced with MAD. Mutual Assured Destruction. The fact that both sides of the conflict had nuclear weapons prevented either side from pushing the nuclear button. Smart and cool heads prevailed then and avoided a catastrophe. Once again, society was faced with a major decision. If they didn’t find a way to get along with one another and STOP the hatred, then their land – and everything and everyone – would be destroyed. It took a few years, but society DID recover. Now, I love a bowl of tomato soup, but give me a bowl of GUMBO and I’m in soup heaven; all the different elements contributing to the overall flavor. After all, where I am weak, you are strong. Where you are weak, I am strong! We’re better when we incorporate ALL our gifts and talents and use them together, towards our better good.
I love GOOD and HAPPY endings!
God is still in charge!!
NEVER GIVE UP!
Love & Peace,