"The simplest acts of kindness are by far more powerful than a thousand heads bowing in prayer."
Kindness, compassion, acceptance, understanding, all words I would hope we all strive for and want in return.
It's hard in today's world, where it's so easy to cyber bully or even for that matter respond quickly in anger without thinking. I have definitely done that, sometimes justified, sometimes not.
Twenty years ago to be angry at someone meant a face to face confrontation, phone call or, hold your breath, writing a letter, with a stamp and everything. Nothing says 'maybe I'm not so angry after all' as trying to put it on paper (try it kids).
Ireland just made it legal for gay marriage and in grand support comes the hatred. J.K. Rowling tweeted a great idea of Dumbledore and Gandolf marrying in Ireland only to be shot down by the Westboro Baptist Church. She gave a short, wonderful response of course but why did she engaged at all with such ignorance?
She said, "I don't care about WBC. I think it's important that scared gay kids who aren't out yet see hate speech challenged."
Brilliant. But where I really learned something was from Evanna Lynch, the actress who played Luna Lovegood. She asked that any anti-gay activist please unfollow and block her. Fair enough. But as she wrote on she explained that having a belief, no matter how misguided, is everyone's right. It's how you put those beliefs on other people that defines your character.
And I never thought of it that way. I had somewhat of an idea that if you secretly judged someone or hated a group of people in an irrational way it made you a bad person. And maybe in a sense it makes you unfortunate, but if you never verbalize, never act on it, never make anyone ever feel any less for it, it is simply a belief and not harmful.
When I told my grandfather I was adopting my daughter from China he said, "You're going to have a little Chink." Meanwhile, he was in tears with joy and began to say he only wanted to live to see this baby. He died before that happened but for my grandmother, who she is named after, she was a joy in her final days.
But in saying that clearly racist term (which I told him he was never to say again) it simply showed his generation. One of World War Two veterans who used such terms without a second thought. Yet he was one of the most loving of men no matter who you were.
So I feel sorry for those who don't know how to change the beliefs that have been ingrained in them and only hope that until they are enlightened they do no harm.
But if your intent is to do harm, to judge, accuse, scorn and hate people you really don't even know, please, as the young actress above requested, remove me from any social feed or possible way of communication. Because to do that you are attacking my friends and my family.
It makes about as much sense as hating people with red hair.
Way to go Ireland.
"I believe a Christian muffler shop owner should have the same right to refuse service to a gay couple, as a gay lifeguard has to refuse service to a drowning Christian.
~Quentin R. Bufogle