Friday, May 4, 2012

The Homicide of Civility

When did it become an acceptable practice within society to take what you can get? When did the ever increasing entitlement issues become so prevalent? It has become second nature in our culture to take advantage of, to take more than earned or deserved and to knock others down on our climbs to personal success and gains. People used to only take what belonged to them, the things they had worked hard to gain. I remember a time when hard work, grace and civility won out. Reaching out and extending a hand to your neighbors use to be common practice. Communities came together to help each other in times of need. If something was desired, goals were set, plans were put into action and bridges had to be crossed in order to reach those goals. Now, you could consider yourself lucky to cross a figurative bridge without being thrown into the gulley by someone else attempting to beat you to it. Entitlement simply put is your right, what is due to you. People don't simply owe someone something because they simply want it or need it, even if they have an over abundance of it laying around in waste. If you desire it, work for it, take the necessary steps to gain it. When did we lose respect for our elders or stop biting our tongues when we didn't have anything nice to say? What happened to principles and doing the right things for the right reasons? We easily accept and fall into common practice but majority does not make something right or acceptable. Take slavery for example. There was a time when it was an acceptable practice. Many whites viewed themselves as superior to blacks. In fact majority ruled. Many people who suspected the practice was wrong simply went along with it because majority did. Clearly slavery was unethical, inhumane and down right wrong. Yet it happened. What I'm saying is, just because the guy next to you is getting ahead by stepping on your head to get where he's going, by no means constitutes you doing the same to the guy under you. Instead grab his hand, pull him up, let him climb to his goals also. Help your neighbors, pray for people, extend your hand. Restore grace and humanity. Never give in to majority when it goes against moral judgement and values. Change what you see as unjust. Encourage rather than criticize. Simply put, do the right thing. Over and over, do the right thing until it catches on. Remember a time when this was majority. Follow the famous words of Mahatma Gandhi, " Be the change you wish to see in the world." Practice them. Teach them. I'm not saying the whole world is full of bad people, I'm just saying there are a handful that are real shitheads. Pray for them, they are the ones who need it most. Remember, "Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself." Mother Teresa said it, and more importantly lived it. Jesus practiced it, preached and taught it. He died for it. Why are we so willing to lose our passion for life? The world needs each one of us to take the steps make it happen. We have a responsibility to ourselves and each other. Be the change. Take a stand and make a difference one person, or family at a time.

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