Posts Tagged With: Tolerance

Tolerance Is the Same in ANY Language

I am still so surprised to see how willing people are to wear their intolerance and hatred as a badge of honor in 2012.  They say it is their first amendment right and its free speech!  I agree!  But I also know free speech has a price!  That is right, I feel free speech is not always free.  Just as anyone has the right to say whatever they want, someone else has the right to say just the opposite and they may be able to say it louder and even have more voices joining in support.  The price that comes with the freedom of speech is to  listen or to exercise  the responsibility to know when it is just best to shut up!  Each time I write a blog, I expect opposition.  I am a realist and understand not everyone (maybe very few) will agree with me.  I am a little late to the game to discuss Kirk Cameron’s insensitive comments about gays, Rush Limbaugh’s attack on Sandra Fluke and then Patricia Heaton insulting Ms Fluke even further.  But what I have to say is timeless (and correct)!!  lol

Kirk Cameron feels he speaks for ALL Christians when he berates gays saying homosexuality is  “unnatural … I think it’s detrimental, and ultimately destructive to so many of the foundations of civilization.”  But when gays and activist for gay causes were outraged, he defend himself by saying, “”I should be able to express moral views on social issues, especially those that have been the underpinning of Western civilization for 2,000 years—without being slandered, accused of hate speech, and told from those who preach ‘tolerance’ that I need to either bend my beliefs to their moral standards or be silent when I’m in the public square,”  WHAT AN IDIOT!!  No one said he did not have the RIGHT to say what he did, people just expressed their own “moral views on social views” that opposed his.  He was not a victim… he just learned he did not speak for all Americans just the ones with his narrow opinions.

Now Rush Limbaugh on the other hand is used to controversy over things he says as a political commentator.  But I think even he was surprised at the backlash after calling Sandra Fluke a “slut” and a “prostitute” after she testified before Congress in favor of  drug coverage for contraception.  Advertisers used their freedom of speech (money) to say we do not want our product associated with your program.  But he also learned an apology is not always enough to make Americans forget.  I support his right to say what he wants just as I support the advertisers right to distance themselves from his program.  As he questions drug coverage paying for contraception for women, I question drug coverage paying for his Viagra.  Being the crazy liberal I am, I think drug coverage should cover both.

Patrica Heaton is an Actress and tried to ignite her own role as a commentator by firing off at least five mean-spirited Tweets like, “If every Tweaton sent Georgetown Gal one condom, her parents wouldn’t have to cancel basic cable, & she would never reproduce – sound good?”  Or this one,”G-Gal: you’ve given yer folks great gift for Mother’s/Father’s Day! Got up in front of whole world & said I’m having tons of sex- pay 4 it!”  That is only two of the five I read.  She later apologized.  It was easy for me to remove her ABC show “The Middle” from my dvr because if she had tweeted one hateful thing, I would accept her apology as sincere, but since she Tweeted so many, I felt she was apologizing because of the PR mess not because she truly meant it.

I am happy we live in a nation where even these three small-minded people mentioned can share their thoughts.  Just as I am happy that in America I have the freedom to write and comment on their actions from a more open-minded perspective.  Sandra Fluke was not deterred in her attempt to share her opinion even after such brutal attacks as I continue to enlighten others of the rights of gays.  I am not sure what Sandra Flukes view are regarding homosexuality, but I would sure welcome such a smart, strong, and fearless woman also defending my cause.

The fear I do have is that all of this intolerance and hatred is being understood by kids, youth, and even young adults as acceptable.  Many Americans are concerned about bullying in schools and many parents say – they did not learn to act that way at home.  I ask, or did they learn it at home?  When you make insensitive comments about immigrant’s limited language, use terms like MY country instead of OUR country, or say things like “those people” when referring to gays, black people, or disabled people; you are teaching the universal language of intolerance!  No one in the United States is even FORCED to learn and use English properly, so there should not be any fear of being FORCED to LEARN anything in America.  Like learning proper English or a foreign language – LEARNING the language of tolerance is voluntary for individuals, but necessary for society!

http://www.newser.com/story/141020/kirk-cameron-homosexuality-is-destructive.html

http://www.newser.com/story/141199/kirk-cameron-defends-his-anti-gay-comments.html

http://www.newser.com/story/141235/doc-are-we-paying-for-limbaughs-viagra.html

http://www.newser.com/story/141095/patricia-heaton-attacks-sandra-fluke-deletes-twitter.html

http://www.newser.com/story/141163/heaton-back-on-twitter-with-message-for-sandra-fluke.html

http://www.newser.com/story/141699/sandra-fluke-name-calling-wont-silence-us.html

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Sometimes We Need To HELP The Ones That NEED The Help!!!

I just finished watching the movie “The Help”.  It gives me hope that one day someone may watch a movie about how gay people are treated in these days and be appalled.  Just as there were stories in the movie of people that were strong, did good and helped change society; there were more stories of how hate made life for many more difficult, tense and in some cases intolerable.  Even as a gay person, I do not feel my road to equality is as treacherous as that of racial minorities, but none the less… I have hope for us all to see each other for what we are worth as human beings and let the hate stop ruining lives.

People of color, whether black, brown, yellow, tan, red, mulatto or even white have never had to defend HOW they became that way.  But for many gays, their stories are riddled with heartache about having to DEFEND who they are to their own families, losing friends, bullying, and even at times – sadly – violence, beatings, death or suicide.  I relish in the stories of gays that have had supportive families and friends, because although they may be more frequent… they are far from the norm.

More gays than not have tremendous baggage by the time they become adults, while some have DEEP scars.  In my case…. I carry a lot of baggage from deep scars!  I have a lot of people I care about, but less than a handful that I truly trust.  I feel undeserving of friendship, feeling I can never be as good a friend to others as I feel they are to me.  These insecurities tend to only make me suspect of people that are willing to be my friend.

The demon I wrestle with most is accountability.  I was molested as a child by someone in my neighborhood and my resentment grows stronger with age as I know this man has never really been held accountable for what he did to me.  I am told, “Thomas, you must forgive him to grow past this.”  But with no accountability…. I just can’t get past how it has so negatively affected my life.  A family member months ago berated me, called me selfish for trying to protect my mother saying, “Thomas, it is not all about YOU!”  Since when did looking out for my mother make anything about “me”?  But other family members forgive her for how she treated me, but she has not been held accountable for how she was allowed to treat me, so I just can’t get past it.

If there were a way to make these racist in “The Help” accountable for their actions, if bigots were held accountable their hatred toward gays (when someone being gay has no impact on them), if disrespect is not challenged – the world we all live in moves backwards instead of progressing.  Do you know someone that needs to be held air actions?  What is the more brave thing to do…. forgive and let the victim work it out alone OR to help hold people accountable for their injustice to others?  Our society has become too forgiving and too complacent.  I feel forgiveness without accountability is a coward’s way out.

It’s Too LATE to HELP Jamey – He Comitted Suicide because NO ONE held bullies accountable….

Jonah reached out….

John Encourages Jonah!!!

This happened November 2011…. MORE needs to be done!
http://kdaf.vid.trb.com/player/PaperVideoTest.swf

WHAT ARE YOU DOING to HELP?

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What Example Are We Setting?

Losing My Religion

Image via Wikipedia

My struggles with religion started floating through my head again this week after seeing a character on one of my favorite shows sing Losing My Religion by R.E.M.  I was reminded how young people must battle with religion based on the examples they see today. 

Lord, Save Us From Your Followers is a movie that asks an important question, “Why is the gospel of love dividing America?”  The movie points out that Christians fight so much amongst themselves about being “right”, that the message of love is never shown.  These LOUD Christians condemn more than they love.   Are Christians today more like Peter when he cut off the ear of a Roman soldier Malchus that was arresting Jesus or are they more Christ-like offering healing and forgiveness? 

All I Need To Learn About Hate, I Can Learn From You & Your Sign!

As Muslims plan to build an Islamic community center, some Christians are showing their love of hatred more so than each other.  I feel if Christ were here today, the parable would be about the good Muslim instead of the good Samaritan.  Christ even showed love, restraint and acceptance of others that disagreed with him to the point he willingly died on the cross. 

One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” (NIV, Mark 12:28-31).

It Is NOT A Mosque.... It Is A Community Center

A Mosque Cannot Spit

Christ did not have his disciples and followers protesting the “victory” of the people who had him put to death because he knew the victory would not be an earthly victory.  But first people need to get their facts correct: 1 – It is NOT a mosque, but a community center; 2 – It is not AT ground zero, it is 2 blocks away; 3 – There were also innocent Muslims and other NON-Christians killed in the Twin Towers and Pentagon that were NOT terrorist.

Is the witness for the youth of today Christ-like – loving, healing and forgiving or is it the witness of the Crusades and the Spanish Inquisition where Christians beat, killed and tortured people to belive?   I am proud to say I consider myself Christian because I follow the teaching of Jesus, but I am not really religious at all because I try very hard to be tolerant.  Actually, I usually say I am Spiritual, but NOT religious! 😉 Maybe we will realize we do not have to be right or even agree on things…. but this is a price of freedom and What Would Jesus Do?

Of All The Signs, Which Is Delivering A More Appropriate Message?

 

 

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The Edge

The Edge… there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over. – Hunter S. Thompson

My friend Pat posted that on his Facebook page.  I felt I was on the edge.  I was writing about a very difficult part of my life when I read this and felt if I looked to see if I could see over the edge, I may fall!  So this put things in prospective for me… maybe I am not as close to the edge as I thought.  Most once thought the Earth was flat and if someone expanded their boundaries, they ran the risk of falling off the Earth.  But isn’t life close to the edge so much more fun?  The view is so much better than most realize!

Life is more exciting to me when boundaries are challenged.  I start my day usually with a cup of Colombian coffee like a lot of Americans do….but I am drinking my Colombian coffee IN Colombia.  I buy my bread at a bakery instead of WalMart.  I have no need for a car so when I go anywhere, I usually walk and see things I would never notice if I were in a car.  I buy my vegetables at a farmer’s market not at a grocery store.  I have created for myself a healthier lifestyle.  As different as my life may be, life here is routine.  Going to the bakery, going to the farmer’s market, walking where I need to go is typical to me now.  I feel I have adapted.

My weakness living here is my lack of Spanish….that I have not adapted to.  I also live in an English bubble here.  My friends all speak English and I know just enough Spanish to get by.  I feel this is a weakness of most Americans.  We feel everyone should speak English.  I have friends that get upset because they have to press 1 for English and there is even an option to have services in Spanish in the U.S.  I feel this is a beauty of American life… LAND OF THE FREE!!  Everyone is free to speak their own language.  Many Americans do not realize that English is NOT the official language of the U.S.  There actually is no “official” language, just English is the most common.  Why do we have such an arrogant attitude that everyone should speak OUR language?  Why can’t American say, “it would be good for me to know another language”?

Beyond the benefit of knowing another language… people could learn about other cultures.  After my first visit, I was ashamed of how little I knew and understood about Colombia and the Latin culture.  Most Americans only think drugs, jungles and guerrillas.  Knowledge is not something to be afraid of.  I know with school, I learned what I needed to pass and get by.  Sometimes even using Cliff Notes instead of reading the books assigned.  Now I am older and learning is more difficult, I regret that I did not make more of an effort when I was young.  Sarah Palin running for vice-president referred to the country of Africa…. I bet she wishes she made more effort also!!  I do not feel Sarah and I are alone.

If we expand our horizons – know more learn more – then our world become larger.

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