Dad here; today, I was rushing through traffic towards my next call, when the dilapidated minivan in front of me rolled to a stop instead of accelerating through the green light just ahead. A person who looked like they might be having “one of those weeks”, jumped out of the van and began trying to push it out of traffic and into the gas station on the corner; within seconds, a man had left his motorcycle in the middle lane, three younger guys on foot seemed to materialize out of nowhere, and before we really knew what was happening, the van was parked safely at the pump, and we were all heading out separate ways.
No one gave a microsecond’s consideration to the race/religion/orientation of the others involved; to be totally honest, I have absolutely no recollection as to what they even looked like. No one felt the urge to lecture the driver of the van on his/her failure to plan ahead and let a vehicle get so low on fuel, or offer knowing advice that they should have been driving a Prius. A need arose, a need was answered, and life went on.
Now, contrast this chance encounter with the vitriol being spewed on social media over the last few days; I’m thoroughly ashamed of myself. Once again, I’ve allowed myself to get tangled up in the tar baby of what I’m being told I should care about; even under the best of conditions, I don’t particularly care for the oxymoron of “professional sports”, yet here I am, braying like a spectator at the Coliseum of Rome over a gladitorial event that doesn’t affect me in the least, or more importantly, that I can’t affect in the least.
And what about “professional sports”; isn’t the very term like a “sanitary landfill”, “temporarily permanent”, “genuinely artificial” or “partially insane”?
For everything there is a season, and there is a time to kneel, and a time to stand; why curse the darkness when you can light a light? It makes me wonder who has time to kneel in protest when there are so many needs that we can affect directly with our actions. I totally understand if one’s social conscience demands that something be done, but for crying out loud, do it; make a difference, not just a statement.
Can you imagine Mother Theresa “taking a knee”? There would have been much more suffering in Calcutta if she had; instead, she arose above the conditions around her and made a real difference, and left a legacy of hope, and today, you have the same opportunity. Check out of this manufactured news cycle for a day or two, and use that time and energy to enact positive change, and you will be stunned as to what you can accomplish.
We be if one blood, ye and I.