This morning a Facebook “friend” posted a very offensive picture of an ugly, crazed-looking woman, who was supposed to be a liberal, with some stupid quote about how liberals whine and cry and how we “unfriend” anyone who doesn’t agree with us on any issue. First of all, if that were true in my case, I’d have about two Facebook friends, not hundreds.
This person then went on to pontificate about how if liberals think something is wrong, then we need to back it up by doing something rather than complaining, posting things on Facebook (funny, like he was doing?), volunteering in our own neighborhoods, and making a difference.
Well, let me tell you right now, this liberal, and many others I know, ARE doing things to make this world a better place. We are out there in our communities and beyond volunteering, working, and fighting to do what is right for those who are less fortunate. And I’m sure there are many conservatives out there doing the very same thing.
Let me give you some idea about what this lazy, whining, crying, snowflake is doing and has done, and you can decide for yourself if all we do is sit around and cry about how we live in an unfair world, and do nothing to try to change the situation.
Each year, my family and I adopt one or more families for the holidays. We make sure that family (or families) have a full meal, extra groceries, gifts, necessities, bedding, pajamas, and more. We deliver their gifts prior to the holiday, and we make sure they have everything they want to make their special day just a little bit brighter.
Many weekends, my two sons volunteer their time at local homeless shelters serving food, taking care of children, planning parties, and playing games. They don’t ask to be somewhere else. They don’t go to parties instead of volunteering. They volunteer because they genuinely like the children and their mothers who live in these shelters, and/or the homeless veterans who reside in some of the others. They don’t do it every weekend, or even every other, so they are not saints. They are not perfect. But they are good-hearted kids who believe in making a difference. They care.
There are several kids who volunteer with my sons who do more than my kids do- they go above and beyond week after week helping those less fortunate and they love every minute of it. I have no idea whether these kids are from conservative or liberal families, and it doesn’t matter. All I know is they aren’t sitting around doing nothing. They are making a difference in the lives of those who need it most. And I’m damn proud of all of them, especially the kid who started the whole organization in the first place. Caleb White was six years old when he first saw a homeless man sleeping on the street. He was upset and decided then and there to start an organization to help others. You can’t force that. He was BORN to lead and he was raised to care about others. It’s just who he is. He is his mother’s son, because she’s the reason he is who he is.
My family and I donate a considerable amount of money to charities, our sons’ previous public schools, their now private school, and other causes that are important to us and to those who benefit from our giving. We are lucky. We realize it, and we want and choose to give back.
I’m not saying any of this to toot my own horn, because clearly, there is more I could do. I could volunteer more hours, give more money, and I could fight harder. I’m laying all this out there because I am sick and tired of people generalizing groups of people and judging others simply because of which political party he/she chooses to join, or which way that person chooses to vote. It goes both ways.
I don’t post pictures of supposed “conservatives” who only care about rich, white people and who believe that all immigrants are criminals. Because it isn’t true. I might have different opinions and ideas than my conservative friends, but I don’t believe all of them are the same, think the same, do the same, and I certainly do not put them all together in ONE big group and slam them all on social media because I think they aren’t doing, saying, or believing the “right” things.
Not long ago, a woman blasted me on Facebook for choosing to send my son to a private school rather than sending him to our local public high school. To make matters worse, she was an employee of one of the schools in the district, she called my husband “ignorant”, and she posted disparaging comments about the non-profit organization in which my sons volunteer and serve on the Board of Directors. She made a jab about how all of the Board Members are private school educated kids (they are not all privately educated, actually), and that it was a “conflict of interest” (which makes no sense, so I don’t think she actually knew what that term means).
I was offended and shocked, as I don’t think it’s anyone’s business where I choose to send my children for high school. I also think it’s horribly wrong that a grown woman would attack a bunch of kids who donate their time to help people in need. As much as I wanted to at the time, I didn’t tell the woman that the organization had a few previous Board Members who were children attending public schools, and they were the ones who all stopped participating for one reason or another. It didn’t have anything to do with whether or not they were public or private school educated. Many of them simply had full course schedules, some had to work, others were playing sports, playing in the school band- these kids are busy. They can’t do it all.
So her judgements about ALL of us were wrong. I was sad that my son saw her comments and couldn’t believe that this woman who was barely an acquaintance, had felt it necessary to attack his mother, his step-father, his dad, and the organization he cares about publicly simply because he wanted to attend a private school. He is a great kid, I know I’m biased, but he came to us when he was in eighth grade after doing research about schools in our area. He told us that he was 35% more likely to get into the college of his choice if he attended and did well at a certain private school. He told us he wanted smaller classrooms, to meet people from different places, different cultures, and he wanted a change. He asked for a chance to prove himself, and we decided to give it to him. We haven’t been disappointed, and he loves his new school. This fall, his brother will attend the same school, and I do not feel one bit of guilt over it. It’s my choice where to send my kids for school, and it doesn’t make me a better or worse person. I’m still me, and I’m not going to change.
My point is this- STOP judging others. Stop throwing us all into groups and assuming we all act the same, do the same things, feel the same, and do NOTHING to change things for the better. Do not post a picture of some disgusting looking woman and tell the world that this is all liberals- we cry, we whine, we name call and we do nothing to help the world. Just stop. And to my fellow liberals- you STOP, too. Everyone needs to grow up. Treat others as you would like to be treated. Give a positive example for your children and grandchildren to follow. Have a heart. Take care of yourself, your family, and take care of others.
I’m absolutely, completely, and unabashedly sick and tired of the mentality that so many people have that as long as they and theirs are doing well, then everyone else can be forgotten. That’s not okay. It’s not right. It’s NOT AMERICAN. We are made up of a country of people whose ancestors were born elsewhere and worked long and hard to get here to live the American Dream. I get that we need to protect our borders. I understand we can’t let everyone in, but arresting people seeking asylum (not illegal, by the way), and taking away their children is beyond reprehensible. There has to be another way to do it, and it is NOT this. There are children now spread out all over the country in shelters, toddlers, babies, who may never see their biological parent again. What a nightmare and a cluster of crap that SHOULD HAVE NEVER HAPPENED. Not here. Not in America.
Call me a socialist (I’m not). Argue that we don’t need to be that concerned about others, that it’s enough to take care of our own. That’s fine if that’s what you believe, but it’s not what I believe and I shouldn’t be called names or made fun of because I want to help take care of others. There’s nothing wrong with that. You go ahead and take care of yours, and I’ll do what I want to do for myself, my family, and anyone else who needs me to offer assistance.
If everyone would just take a few deep breaths and vow to treat each other with just a little bit more kindness, what a different world it could be. Find your heart and use it. We all need a little more love right now.
For more information about The Caleb White Project and how Caleb’s story began, visit www.tlandrygilder.com and check out the book, Everything Big Starts Somewhere Small. To learn more about the Caleb White Project, or to donate to this very worthy cause, visit www.calebwhiteproject.com.