When I was a teenager, every Saturday morning started with a family housework event. We had jobs assigned by my dad, and could not leave the house until the chores were done. As the oldest child in the family, I also had the responsibility of taking our laundry to the laundromat every Monday. The laundry generated by our ten-person family filled every washer. On Saturdays, I was responsible for dusting shelves. Thankfully, that was an easy job, after the big laundry task the prior Monday.
How much housework can you really do in a few hours? Nothing was ever complete all in one day. That is how I feel about social justice.
None of us may live long enough to finish what the world needs. If you wish for social justice for all, you may be disappointed.
I am starting something. What if we all started something?
As one of the many steps to get hired at KenCrest, I took the Hogan. It’s a screening questionnaire to match my preferences to the people who have succeeded in jobs like this.
I did not like it. There were several questions which asked me if I hate people who had specific attitudes. I do not hate people. Since I believe strongly in freedom of speech, I appreciate differences in opinions. I have strong beliefs too and I may strongly disagree with someone but even when their attitudes are the opposite of mine, but I will not hate.
I ask all of you to think twice before jumping to conclusions when someone may disagree with your ideas – especially when you may feel hatred.
I ask that you consciously choose something else. Here are some alternative choices to hate:
- Listen beyond the facts. Listen for the feelings and impacts of injustices.
- Say that you are truly sorry. There is no good explanation for injustice.
- Choose to ask questions to deepen your understanding. Offer facts that are missing.
- Don’t blame. Sometimes in the middle of pain, blame will be assigned, assigned without thinking.
- Be a role model of kindness. In the midst of antisocial behavior, don’t copy it!
- Reject the notion that hate achieves anything good.
- Decide that if you dislike an idea or attitude, you will still care about the person involved.
Start something. Agree to care about justice, and say no to hate.