You Have No Right

The Golden Rule. Whether or not you’re religious, that thing applies to you. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. My mom drilled that one into our heads from day one. You can’t expect good when you sow bad crap. You reap exactly what you sow. It may not come back to you in the exact same manner but rest assured, it’s coming back. I’ve preached that to my son. That’s a fact of life, but some people forget that. Some people are so bent on the bad things that have happened to them, they either subconsciously…or consciously… treat everyone else in a bad way.

“He/She Hurt Me, So…”

So you were hurt. No, you were crushed. Wait, no, you were devastated. Okay, I get it. What I don’t get is why that fact makes it okay for you to hurt, crush, or devastate the new one in your life. If there’s one thing I hate, it’s categorizing people and deciding that every man or woman you meet is the same. That’s ridiculous. That sweet woman you met (or in some cases, have known your entire life) is not the same one who did everything in her power to single-handedly destroy you as a person. She’s not the same person who ripped the seams out of your pockets in an effort to make you “pay” for the fact that you took away her access to the First National Bank of You. They’re not the same person.

He’s not the same man who decided you weren’t quite the woman he wanted so instead of just letting you go, he strung you along. I had that happen. It’s funny to me now, but when it happened back in the late 80s, I was devastated. I cried, I assumed the fetal position, and wondered why the entire world was against me. The truth was, it wasn’t the entire world; I had just run across a stupid, immature man (boy).

If I was bent on hurting men because I’ve been hurt, I would have destroyed the man who came into my life after my divorce. How foolish would that have been? First of all, doing that would have required me to be angry and bitter. Welp, I didn’t have those (un)endearing qualities, so I had no basis for mistreating that man. Besides that, he was already dealing with a woman who was so mean, she could burn down a whole forest of trees just by walking through it. She was (is) hateful, y’all. From what I understand, she always has been a mean one. Probably always will be. I haven’t met anyone yet who knows her personally or otherwise who thinks she’s a good person. Poor her. Poor him. Still, though, he would be a fool to allow her evil to become his evil. Be smart, dude.

In General

People of different races hold hands as they gather on the Arthur Ravenel Jr. bridge in Charleston
Photo credit: PBS

The Golden Rule is applicable in all areas of life. Right now, in such ridiculous political unrest — yeah, I said UNREST — you have to be mindful of the rule. In the end, we’re all human beings. We are privileged to live in the greatest nation on the planet. We are the land that people come to so that they may fulfill their goals and dreams. Ours is the place where differences make all things better.

 

I am blessed to have friends from all walks of life. I know folks of all creeds, colors, religions, sexual orientations, and beliefs. I love them all. The one thing that’s always bothered me is when I hear people say they don’t see color. How can you not see their color? Now, that color doesn’t mean a thing to me, but I definitely see it because I think it’s one of the things that makes a person magically different. If I don’t see your color, in my mind, that means I don’t see what makes you different from me — I don’t see what sets you apart. I don’t see what makes you unique. I love learning about different cultures.  Everyone who knows me knows that I was born and raised in the Church of God in Christ. We sang (yeah, SANG), we dance, and we will run the church if the spirit hits us just right. That sets me apart from my white Lutheran friends. I’ve visited a Lutheran church and loved it. See what I mean?

In the end, though, I don’t care how different you are; I don’t care if you’re black, white, yellow, red, orange, pink, purple, or polka-dot, I’m going to treat you the way I want to be treated. I want to feel welcome wherever I go so I will make you feel welcome in my presence. I want to be greeted with a smile so I’ll always greet you with a smile. It’s who I am. Besides, who in the world has time to sit around all angry and bitter. That gives you wrinkles.

 

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