Thursday, November 8, 2018

Treating People with Respect

It’s a wonder we’re not all building forts around our homes with all the news media coverage of political campaigns, horrors happening in the country and the world, and then people repeating all this negativity through social media. People are mentally breaking and committing acts of violence in their frustrations and fears. It’s hard not to feel inundated with hopelessness for the human race.

I’m striving to be a recluse. Not because I’m personally afraid, but because I’m so sick of it all. (Plus, I want to stay home to do my writing and art work.) People are upset by the affairs of the country and world, but history proves we are dealing with the same issues that have been going on since mankind began. Issues such as the haves and have nots, those thinking they are better than the next guy, wanting control over others, or just plain wanting what someone else has and feeling it’s their right to just take it. Then there are those who believe their way is the right way for everyone, whether it is or not.

News lately is full of hate, accusations, unfulfilled promises, misleading comments, snippets of statements used to promote dissention, marketing products that are not honest, and more. There are those who come up with convincing words to manipulate the public. OK, every so often there will be a human compassion story, but those are getting far and few between. The media’s excuse is that the bad news is what sells and they’re in the business to sell news. (And with either news or advertising; it doesn’t matter if it’s totally true or not.)

People rant about their ancestors being slaves on southern plantations, but there has been slavery for generations all over the world – and still goes on in some places. People are angry over discrimination, but discrimination isn’t only against one race or religion. Legal immigrants to this country are still being discriminated against in some places and many of them have been here for almost their entire lives. And, it doesn’t matter what country they came from! It’s not just one set of people!

Women have struggled throughout history to break free of certain roles, and as far as they’ve come in this country, there are still issues they are dealing with. Again, look at history. Times have changed, technology has changed, new programs were introduced and, for the most part, women have more freedoms, but in some cases, they are still treated differently than men. Then there are some countries where women don’t have many rights at all and men totally rule everything.

Some rant against “white privilege.” Well, not all white people fall into that category. Many have had hard lives. There are poor whites, discriminated against whites, white people who are jobless, homeless or living in hovels, veterans who can’t get proper help, and more instances.

The real issue is not about color, religion, where we’re from, ancestry, hair styles, mode of dress, or language we speak. It’s about how people are treated! Maybe it’s about hierarchy. Those in power (governments) always believe themselves above everyone else; from better benefits and education, to bigger salaries …

So, what do we need to do to live wholeheartedly? Maybe it’s just about learning to live together, accepting and respecting one another. Bring back some simple guidelines for living well like working hard, kindness, courtesy, sharing, helping neighbors, etc. Maybe it needs for leaders to show more respect for people, to find programs to help and if a program doesn’t work (no matter how good it sounds) take it down and try something different.

No, it’s not a perfect world, and because of human nature, there are those who will always be on that “other” side of goodness. As a writer, I’m more aware of words. These days I’m particular on who and what I listen to. I watch people’s actions before I believe what they say. I look for a deep-hearted goodness in others … and work at promoting that more in myself.

I may not leave my house often these days, but when I do, I always try to say a few kind words to people I meet, give a compliment, say something light-hearted about the weather. I also take time to thank delivery people, store clerks, waiters, etc. If they have a story, I’ll listen. These little things don’t take much effort, but they can help others feel better and it gives me a feeling of accomplishment, that I’ve lived a whole-hearted day.

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