Friday, September 9, 2011

People are people...

For any of you that, like me, still love 80's music - allow me to lead off this post with some Depeche Mode lyrics. I am quoting from memory the parts of the song that are stuck in my head today, so forgive me if the verses aren't word for word or slightly out of order.

People are people
So why should it be
You and I must get along 
So awfully

So we're different colors and we're different creeds
And different people have different needs
It's obvious you hate me though I've done nothing wrong
I've never even met you so what could I have done?

People are people
So why should it be
You and I must get along 
So awfully

Now you're punching and you're kicking and you're shouting at me
I'm relying on your common decency
So far it hasn't surfaced, but I'm sure exists
It just takes a while to travel from your head to your fists

So, Brooke you may be wondering, why on earth are you posting Depeche Mode lyrics today? And what in the heck are you talking about anyway? 

Here's my thought:  Can we all just work on being slightly more tolerant and less judgmental?

Between all the debate on sexual orientation, religion, how best to parent your kids, and even food allergies in schools, it makes me sad that so many of these discussions turn into personal attacks. There's no need for that. If people would work just a little harder to be understanding and tolerant, I am firmly convinced that the world would be a better place to live. It's okay not to agree with someone else's lifestyle or point of view. Just agree to disagree, and if it still bugs you, don't spend time around them.

My urge to blog about this intensified this week after I read a couple of blog posts and a Facebook exchange.

Blog post: A mom wrote about deciding to ask for help battling her depression.

This touched me because while I'm still not sure I'm depressed (more than likely I'm hormonally imbalanced or just flat out bitchy - sorry but it's true), I recognized myself in a lot of the issues she described. It concerns me enough that I'll be mentioning it to my doctor on my next visit. Better safe than sorry.  However, the reason that this blog entry really resonated with me was because not too long ago, a blog I used to follow put up a post that was a deal breaker for me. The topic was - basically - how sick that Mommy blogger was about reading other Mommy blogs where Moms admitted mistakes or fears or what amounted to anything less than sunshine-y mommy perfection. Which, you know, is totally within her right to feel that way, but I know how sometimes those blog entries kept me from being convinced I was the worst mother ever to birth a child. Life isn't always perfect, no matter  how sunny your personality. So when I read that berating post, I knew that this wasn't a blog I wanted anything to do with. Hello, delete button. Thank you for being my friend.

Blog post: Food allergies.

I am so, so, so lucky. My kids don't have food allergies. But I would never, ever be annoyed or irritated that I had to be careful about what I sent them for lunch or for treats because a kid in their class had food allergies. I was appalled to learn that not only is this pretty common, but that other parents actually make nasty comments about it. To those parents I say, please remove your head from in betwixt your glutes and stomp on your own foot. Really, really hard.

Facebook posts: homosexuality or bisexuality.

Apparently my sister in law is bi. So what? She's still a rock star. (thank you Pink)

Last time I saw a picture of her,(which was TODAY) she hadn't changed skin colors, grown a tail,  sprouted non-photoshopped horns, or started spreading mayhem. But I guess to some of her and my brother's friends this is a big deal.  And it's possible I didn't read all the posts in the tone which the writer intended, but somewhere Jesus got thrown into it, and honestly...just stop. I'm tired of people hiding behind the Bible or God or Jesus to denounce whatever. If you believe something and much of your beliefs are tied directly into your religion, fine. But jeez.

If you believe that homosexuality is a sin, okay. I'm fine with that. I don't agree, but guess what? I can live the rest of my life knowing we differ in opinions on that topic without it changing my opinion of you....unless you act like an ass. That holds true for religion, child rearing, birth control, and gay marriage.  But I am sick to death of ignorance and intolerance. I just re-read Hardly Silenced by Wendy Anderson-Spencer. It's a collection of quotes from people on the subject of homosexuality. I'm stunned by some of the quotes. People are saying these things and it's 2011, people. Not 1950, not 1802. I'm appalled. Appalled that there is so much hate and intolerance in the world.

So for my part, I announce loudly these things:
I think gays should be able to get married and share the same benefits as heterosexuals do.
I think writing about your struggles in a blog post helps more people than you'd imagine.
I think religion is great, but not a substitute for using your brain.
I think mixed raced marriages should not even be an issue anymore.
I think bad parents should not be allowed to be parents anymore.
I think people who do little other than judge others should simply shut up.
I think members of Westboro Baptist Church need a come to Jesus chat...preferably with God himself.
And most of all, I think the rules apply to me AND to you.

::stepping off my soapbox::

Now, let's discuss this civilly and respectfully, shall we?

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