I’m going to keep today’s post short and simple because the solution to what happened this weekend (and every day before and after) is just that: short and simple. It’s hard to leave a weekend like this feeling anything but anger and sadness. Surprised? Not so much. Events like what occurred in Charlottesville, Virginia happen on a daily basis, they’re just oftentimes not as explicit, violent, or demonstrated on such a mass scale. The thing about racism, white supremacy, xenophobia, religious intolerance, homophobia, and sexism–more specifically–is that they are insidious and they don’t have to be overt with the stereotypical symbols of hate, like burning crosses, angry mobs, and lynch ropes, to be painful and harmful. Acknowledge that. Acknowledge your own bias and the beliefs you have that cause you to judge and mistreat people who are different from you. Acknowledge your own privilege. Have conversations. Do the work and recognize that that work won’t be easy. Do it anyway because at the end of the day our job on this earth is to make life easier, happier, and better for everyone, not just some. The only way things are going to change is if you do something to change it. 200 + years is a long time to hate others. It’s also a long time to live in fear. Isn’t it time we actually do something about this? Love on someone today. Maybe it starts with love. Maybe that’s the first step in the right direction. Maybe we could at least try.
On a recent, restless, insomnia-filled late night, I randomly stumbled upon some old news out of Texas initially reported by the Huffington Post back in November of 2013. Richardson High School hired Christian motivational speaker and co-author of Christian dating books, Justin Lookadoo, to inspire and motivate its students. While Lookadoo did, in fact, inspire his captivated audience, I’m sure their response wasn’t what he imagined. You see, many of Lookadoo’s dating tips stem from a close-minded, misogynistic viewpoint. His books promote archaic conservative ideas like “datable girls know that guys need to be needed. A Datable girl isn’t Miss Independent” or “God made guys as leaders. Datable girls get that and let him do guy things, get a door, open a ketchup bottle. They relax and let guys be guys. Which means they don’t ask him out!!!” or my personal favorite, “Datable girls know how to shut up.”