Inktober Day 3 Poison
One of my favorite stories for my son Greg was when he would watch Sesame Street at age 3 and run to tell me the story he'd learned. One day it was the story of the man who wanted to get rid of all his frogs. So he did. Then he had a huge fly problem, which is worse. So the lesson was, "Better 'n flies!" I can just see his blonde hair and sweet smile as he relays the message to me. And today, he loves nature. And his son loves bugs and toads and things, even as an adult. Awesome.
My first idea was this though:
Fake news, propaganda, negative commentary are all filling our psyche with walls built against our neighbors who are different. I was not raised this way. I was raised to accept others, to learn about their customs to understand them, and to welcome everyone into our community.
Today an uncle "liked" a story about pilots for the football team the Saints. According to the story, the pilots loaded the team, then "took a knew" and left so they couldn't fly. It's made up. It's not real. It's fiction. If my uncle had but read the fine print, the page even says it is supposedly "satire" and "fictitious." My uncle probably knew that, and shared it just see who would also like it. But it's sole purpose is to break our souls -- to make us cry out against someone else's ideals and ideas and to say "So there!" to make the others angry too. The Fake News is so bad that I couldn't even comment under it to share the link to the story explaining it as falsehood. And there's no way I would share it back.
Please. Stop. Please check the facts before sharing. Please get to know your neighbor. Please learn about other cultures. Please let's build a better world.
Do we really want to live in a world where we don't know the truth, and can't find out because we've allowed this poison into our worlds?
I've heard about a book by Masha Gessen: The Future Is History.
In Russia, nothing is trusted -- the people are limited in what they can read and see; their world view is controlled by Putin's governance. Is that what we want? I'm hoping we are strong enough and intelligent enough to see this poison for what it is, and stop sharing, stop believing the unbelievable and instead look for ourselves and to trusted media for our information.
I'm listening next to On Point, another interview with Masha Gessen. I don't know if I'll find any answers, but sharing this request and reminder that we Americans are better than this. We are the United States of America -- unless we let this poison divide us.
Reflect curiosity and wonder --Go boldly and scatter seeds of kindness...