Hold Your Fire, Valentine

It’s Valentine’s Day, but you’d hardly know it the way some of us are acting.

I keep noticing that we humans are quite capable of being good to each other when we get to know each other face to face.

Of course I realize that some people are just eat up with the meanness and dish it out every chance they get, but honestly, you and I both know those people are the exception.

The rest of us?

See, we may be incompatible in more ways than not, but we can get along just fine with someone once we get to know them even just a little. I mean, we’ve all had the surprise experience of making friends with someone who couldn’t be more unlike us.

So here’s what I recommend—love for your fellow human beings.

Given that it’s well-nigh impossible to change another human being, and given that we’re blessedly past the Great Shit Show of 2016, and given that it is what it is at this point, whaddya say we throw a little love into the mix.

A lot of love, actually.

This’d be a great time to haul out the good stuff that’s been aging in the basement.

It’s time to love each other, because in spite of everything that’s happening in the world today and in our weird world and politics, we’re still in this shit together.

In spite of our considerable differences, and in spite of our loathing for someone else’s clearly misguided political and religious missteps against our own politics and religion, we still exist on this earth together.

Of course, we do have the option of just fighting it out and killing each other.

That’s still on the table.

But maybe we can do better.

Maybe we can see eye to eye on not fighting it out until we just blow the whole place up.

That’s where love comes in.

And in case it’s not obvious, you don’t have to like someone to love them.

You don’t have to make friends with everyone.

It’d just be a good idea to respect their humanity—

  • Their right to be entirely different from you and the people you like.
  • Their right to be whatever weird or objectionable way they are.
  • Their right to make their own decisions—even decisions you find questionable at best.
  • Their right to think altogether differently than you do.
  • Their right to have practically nothing in common with you or anyone you know.
  • Their right to look different than you do. To eat different foods. To have a different religion. Or no religion at all.
  • Their right to exist on the planet with dignity equal to yours.

Love is this—

simply living out the golden rule.

It’s that simple.

Which, if you’re not up on your churchin‘, is where Jesus says to treat people like you want them to treat you.

With respect. Genuine respect.

And none of this tough love shit, where we say we love other humans but stand our ground when we have some sort of policy to uphold.

It’s just not that complicated.

Love is love.

People are people.

Yeah, yeah, yeah, it appears we’ve got a good vs. evil thing going anymore, but guess what?

On a day-to-day basis we just have each other.

And we really, truly cannot be one of the good guys if we’re mean, now can we?

I don’t even have any answers—I can only tell you that when we relate to people as fellow human beings on this planet together, we make progress for humanity.

In one of the things we say in my church, we pledge to “respect the dignity of every human being,” and I get chills every time we say that.

To me, this is what the golden rule is, and this is what love is.

And if love isn’t what this is all about, then I don’t know why we’re even here.

Go forth, shiny people, and be especially kind and respectful since it’s Valentine’s Day but of course every day should be Valentine’s Day in a way, right?

But over-achieve a little. Get your golden rule groove on—be all kinds of kind and decent.

Because clearly, humanity desperately needs your help.

So go out there and overdo some love, Valentine’s Day or not.

Happy Valentine’s Day to everyone, everywhere, every day.


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