“People say, ‘I want to change the world!’ Wonderful! I’ve got a great place to start – look in the mirror and get to work!” – David Roppo
“We become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, different dreams.” – Jimmy Carter
“What is tolerance? It is the consequence of humanity. We are all formed of frailty and error; let us pardon reciprocally each other’s folly – that is the first law of nature.” – Voltaire
“In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.” – Dalai Lama
Last week I was away at a family wedding and all kinds of great things happened during that time which make me think we’ve reached a tipping point in the direction of choosing love instead of hate.
The wedding was beautiful, as was the scenery along the way and at our destination. I don’t know the couple well, but everyone who spoke of them said they are two exceptional people. That in itself is hopeful. Weddings are a celebration of love. That’s what made the Supreme Court decision about making sure marriage equality is accepted in all 50 states an extra bonus to the weekend.
The Supreme Court also upheld The Affordable Care Act, and they upheld the use of an independent commission made of up citizens to draw Arizona’s congressional districts. In other words, they stood for the citizens of this country in three different ways. Hurray! It’s another few steps in the right direction.
Though I was very happy about all the decisions, the one that surprised and delighted me the most, because I didn’t think it would happen, was the one that upheld the rights of THE PEOPLE of my state of Arizona to decide how to to organize the voting districts. The politicians have to stay out of such decisions. If they upheld the vote of the people on this issue in my state, it can be the beginning of the end for gerrymandering in other states as well. This decision was big, and went mostly unnoticed with the news of the other two decisions. However, all three, in my opinion, point to the beginning of the end of lots of injustices that have been in place in this country.
As I’ve emphasized many times in the two years I’ve been writing this blog, there are positive things happening. The tide is turning toward more tolerance, and more fair treatment for all our citizens. I think what happened last week is definite proof that what I’ve been saying is true.
Other positive things are happening as well. Look at what’s been happening since the shooting in Charleston. I have to say that I was moved by the statements of the families of the victims. They shared love and forgiveness for the poor young man who allegedly did the shooting. Because of their forgiveness, lots of people are engaging in actual, serious conversations about not only the symbol of the confederate flag, but how blacks, and other ethnic groups, have been treated. We’re examining our unacknowledged and unexamined attitudes about each other. (Thank you Donald Trump!)
If you watch Fox news you probably still think the world is going to hell in a hand basket, (Sorry for the over used metaphor.) that liberals are taking over the world and persecuting conservative Christians and wealthy white people. It’s not, and we’re not. We’re just standing up for the rights of ALL people.
Here are some more positive signs that the tide is changing and that we’ve reached the tipping point toward the positive. Both Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have had huge turnouts at their rallies, and raised enormous amounts of money donated mostly by ordinary citizens. The Republicans who are running for office sound more and more like people high on drugs or people who are mentally ill living in world of their own creation. The Girl Scouts refused a $100,000 anti-transgender donation, the attacks on the president by the Koch brother’s and the Tea Party are failing, and many people around the world continue to speak out on issues from guns to women’s rights, education for all, and how damaging it is to use religion to attack others. Wow! The good news is everywhere.
Now I understand that most of us automatically go to the negative when events happen. My friend Jean, who had brain surgery almost two years ago, has been studying books about brain research. One thing she told me was that scientists have discovered that we’re hard wired to embrace the negative first and that turning our thinking around to the positive can be difficult. But it can be done. It just takes practice.
I have to admit that I grew up in a positive environment, so it’s easier for me to change those initial negative thoughts to positive ones, however, I too feel despair at times about all the bad news. That’s why I seek out positive news items, TV shows, movies and supportive messages on social media. If we feed our minds negative images and messages, that’s what we’ll think about. Conversely, if we feed our mind positive messages, it becomes easier to think in the positive. Maybe recent events show us that people ARE beginning to embrace positive thoughts which produce positive change. I hope so.
Thanks for reading. Feel free to leave a comment.
Lucinda Sage-Midgorden © 2015