Sometimes I read the news and think, “Way to go Humanity!”
Other times I think, “this is not news; this is crap…Kardashian who?” (I’m talking to you, CNN.)
Too often after scrolling sites attempting to seriously report “news,” my heart squinches and all I have to offer is, “oh my soul.”
A 102- year-old PhD candidate finally earns the degree she deserved and was denied 70+ years ago because of her Jewish heritage…#WaytoGoHumanity.
Anything about “ugly” spouses, anti-vaxing, Gov. Brownback as a hero, secrets to win your stalky love back/lose toe fat/win a million Reeses, etc…#GetaGrip.
Revelations about children molested, people dismissed for race, gender, or questioning; my beloved adopted home-state engaging in #AssHolierThanThouNess…oh my soul.
Typically after reading any news, my thoughts loop back to something like: “what can I do?” and “how can I encourage/celebrate?” (or “oh sheesh”). I don’t often know for sure what I can do, but I’m willing to bumble about and try.
I do know this: Joy deserves to be shared. Let’s fling that stuff around like confetti.
Pain. We have a responsibility to do what we can to help people grow and live when it is in our ability to do so. Why else are we alive?
We start with our families, friends, and extend to community and strangers. It’s what we would hope for if we or our loved ones were in pain or on the side of the highway with a flat tire.
And it doesn’t mean “fixing” people or dying at the stake. I’ve witnessed profound change as people who excel in small oft-hidden kindnesses commence to love, offer grace, and quietly serve.
We all know of people who have gone before us who bore the brunt of scorn and pain towards social or familial healing. They faced the hard and terrifying task of bucking the status quo and daring to hope and work for something different.
John Brown was not someone I’d want as a neighbor, but he was part of a long something that eventually became a promise of freedom to many – a freedom not yet fully realized.
You know…people are still dying and sacrificing for the greater good, their families, beliefs, and strangers. Today. Dying. For strangers.
In a culture where our news is so curated that we can pretend only the people with whom we agree are “making news” and doing good, we owe it to ourselves and the folks who come behind us to get uncomfortable. We can get to know people and the thoughts behind our dissenting ideas. We can remember that the people behind the policies are still people – even if they have maligned survivors, promoted perpetrators, and further marginalized the poor.
Sometimes – if we pay attention and search beyond our circled wagons – we learn something good and world-changing.
Our world can change and that’s a trickle-down theory I can believe in.
How about flinging a bit of joy with me?
Let’s celebrate good in our interactions both tangible and virtual with a #WaytoGoHumanity or whatever is your thing. Let’s keep trying to trickle-down truth and kindness; authenticity, respect, and community.
It’s a shot worth taking.