Friday, January 8, 2010

Respect

This post is in response to blog posts and comments made by various bloggers. I am finding there is a mentality among some of "this is how I think and if you don't like it, screw you." I get it, I have been there. I spent the first 21 years of my life with that attitude. But I would like to encourage more of an openness and willingness to accept those of varying opinions, even those of what might be described as a wrong or harmful opinion.

I believe that we, as a community, are looking for acceptance. We want some sort of validation from those we love and also from the general public, whether it be by accepting gay marriage, or allowing gays in the military, or even something as simple as being open about one's sexuality without fear of repercussion. We march on Washington for our rights, yet we scrutinize and criticize the words and actions of those who disagree with us. We become everything we dislike about our oppressors (ok, oppressors is a pretty strong word, but doesn't it add a little flair!).

To those who are of the opinion, "If they don't like who I am then I probably don't want them as a friend anyway," think of the times that someone close to you made an offensive comment simply because they did not know any better. Did we love them or leave them? We can not EXPECT change. We must FIGHT for change. We must show COMPASSION to those who despise us the most. We must LOVE those who do not love us. We must BREAK DOWN THE WALLS that we are continuing to build.

I had an experience recently where one of my friends made a comment that I took great offense to. At first, I lashed out. I couldn't believe the inappropriateness. But after thinking about it for a day or so, I realized that my friend was merely making a comment based on her perception of the situation within her reality. I begged for forgiveness of my lashing out and when we further discussed her comment, it turns out that her intention of the comment was far different from my interpretation of the comment. If I had written this friend off immediately, neither of us would have had the opportunity to learn and grow from each other. We educated each other by working through our differences with love and respect.

I encourage each of you in your personal endeavors to maintain a spirit of love and understanding. I hope that we can each become positive influences in the lives of those around us.

4 comments:

A Gay Mormon Boy said...

You make some very interesting points. I think the chief among them is two-way tolerance. We are hypocrites if we demand something from someone without expecting the same of ourselves.

Bravone said...

Awesome post. About all I can say is Amen.

robert said...

Tolerance has two sides if not many more. It is also difficult to love someone who cannot accept us for who we are.

jonedrahadian said...

To tolerate any opinion differences is a very good thing to do. If there is no differences at all, what's the point of any discussions?

Joned ^_^