Judge Less; Love More
By Christy Wiseman
I recently heard a beautiful interview with Paul Mitchell (for those of you who don’t know, he was the retired representative from Michigan, who went into office as a Republican, but later left the party for the Independent party, as did I, and for the same reasons) It was on CNN Sunday night – August 22nd.
Now if you’re still with me, question this: His wish was to give an interview from his hospice bed, but not to have it aired until AFTER his death. Why would that be? It bespeaks a sadder, but growing situation in the United States and perhaps elsewhere as well.
When I first came to Ajijic, I was told it was a “gay free” city. I didn’t care. My first husband was “gay.” No, I didn’t know it when I married him, but I soon found out after and stayed with him for ten years. Why? He was a good man, a loving father, a caring person and a good friend. Plus, a priest told me that were I ever to be with another man I’d be excommunicated. After ten years (I’m a slow learner) I gave up as did he.
In my naïveté I thought I could change my husband and he did want to change or thought he did and could. We were both wrong.
Eventually we decided that a gay man and a heterosexual woman can be dear friends and can have a lot in common, but that differing sexual identification does not make for an ideal marriage AND what one is, one is.
We divorced which allowed us each to find more suitable partners. We could still appreciate and value one another as human beings without either of us needing to change. I can sympathize with the challenges being gay or a varied lifestyle choice brings, but I can’t empathize, because I’m not gay. “Walk a mile in my shoes” conveys the idea that what is part of one person’s identity is not necessarily what is part of another’s. That shouldn’t diminish the value of each.
In today’s age, “fitting in” which translates to “having the same mentality” isn’t so much a sexual thing as it is a political thing in many circles.
Now when you meet someone, the first question no longer seems to be your sexual preferences, (who really cares what two consenting adults choose to do in private.) The first question seems to be, “Are you Republican or Democrat; liberal or conservative” and if you are what I am, maybe we can be friends, but if you aren’t, we will be enemies as then I’ll know you’re stupid or worse. The damning assumptions seem to be, if you are conservative you are a “Trumper and buy the whole package and only watch Fox TV” and if you are a liberal, you never watch Fox and anything related to Democrats is good and kind.
Be cautious of such broad strokes with such a judgemental brush.
Name calling can result, which belittles you and gives the person calling the names the seeming right to harm you, destroy your business and sometimes your life because of his or her fancied superiority. Where is the love or peace or joy in that? Some lovers of violence might find it, but hopefully you wouldn’t.
Now in schools in the U.S., the Critical Race Theory or CRT is being pushed, which divides us based on our skin color. If, by chance you are white, heaven help you. You’ve obviously had “white privilege” and are the oppressor. If you aren’t, you are the oppressed so I guess that means you’ll find it almost impossible to become successful; examples to the contrary. In truth, harder, maybe, because in some areas or companies, there IS still systemic racism practiced, perhaps without intent or even awareness. There is also nepotism, illegal but practiced. The solution offered by CRT is creating equity. That is a simple solution for a complex problem. Creating equity creates a dangerous attitudinal difference because it gives credence to “righteous hatred.” Face it – hatred is never righteous. Life is not always fair. Accept it. Do your best anyway. It will give an example to someone in need of it. Find your passion. Make a difference with your special talents and hard work.
Equity divides us rather than unites us. It leads to destruction of our right to be wonderfully different, unique, amazing human beings who make differing choices depending on our values and talents. Hopefully they are the right ones for us. Equity also negates the possibility of appreciating that uniqueness and beauty and value in another.
I chose my profession because it was the most meaningful to me, certainly not because it was the most financially rewarding. Does that make me “less than?” or mean that by fate or by your professional choices you have an unfair financial advantage? Continuing that line, should you then be obliged/forced to give me some of
what you earned. You choose your path, good for you. I’m happy with mine and with its consequences. Good for me.
Can we overlook our differences and still value one another in order to come together to find solutions for common problems?
Kahlil Gibran once said, “Your work is your love expressed. May that also be true of our lives.
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