Everything I Needed to Know

Published December 4, 2012 by sojournerdoug

ona-flagI helped out in the Kindergarten class this Sunday. It was enlightening. Alongside the usual first-Sunday-in-advent lessons, the kids learned that just because Justin hit Suze doesn’t mean Suze can hit Justin back.

Suze was mad, but she and the other kids seemed to understand.

I’d like to take this opportunity to spread this lesson to the world in general, or if that’s too much to ask, at least to social media. I’ve been seeing a lot of posts lately that, instead of simply saying “Hooray for our side” they actively seek to ridicule someone else’s religion, political ideals, or any other number of things that separate us, yet shouldn’t.

Not cool.

I know that many Republicans have been insulted by Democrats. Many Democrats have been insulted by Republicans. I’ve seen men post misogynistic things about women, and I’ve seen women post condescending things about men. The list goes on.

Let’s take Suze’s example and expand it. Say Justin hits Suze, so she turns around and slaps Dalton and Ian. Her reasoning is that all boys are mean, so she’s justified in hitting them.

It’s pretty easy for most people to understand how wrong this is, and yet adults do it all the time.

Let’s see if we can get this off to a good start…

If you were, at any point in your life, hurt or insulted by a man because you are a woman, then on behalf of all men, I apologize.

If you were, at any point in your life, hurt or insulted by an Independent voter because you are a Republican or Democrat, then on behalf of all Independent voters, I apologize.

If you were, at any point in your life, hurt or insulted by a homosexual person because you are straight, then on behalf of all homosexuals, I apologize.

If you were, at any point in your life, hurt or insulted by a Christian because you were anything but, then on behalf on all Christians, I apologize.

If you were, at any point in your life, hurt or insulted by a tall person because you are short, then on behalf of all tall people, I apologize.

If you were, at any point in your life, hurt or insulted by a sleep deprived over-caffeinated young professional, then on behalf of all sleep deprived over-caffeinated young professionals, I apologize.

To quote the great Wil Wheaton: “Don’t be a dick.” To that I would add “Don’t be an asshat” and “Don’t drink and facebook.”

If Suze can handle it, so can you.

(Oh, and for those wondering, yes, Justin did make a sincere apology to Suze and appropriate follow-up with his parents.)

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