This is a follow up to a recent rant.
I have no intention to take back my thoughts in the previous rant. I would simply like to add a little texture to it. Though no one has challenged or questioned my thoughts, I think it’s worth my time to add some definition.
As I said before, a community, or “village”, is made up of independent individuals. Each person has their own set of skills, experiences, talents, liabilities, and an infinite number of other qualities. It is not the responsibility of the community to provide you or your family anything. However, it is the responsibility of each member of a community to live a life within the bounds of the law. Whether that is in business or in personal behavior. In doing so, each member of the community will prove to be an asset by virtue of their ethics and conduct.
As a member of a community, the things I do for recreation, the things I do professionally, the things I do spiritually, the places I go may lead our paths to cross at some point. If and when they do, I will respect you. I will not use profanity. I will be polite. If I see someone out to harm you, I will do what I can to help you. I will not force my spiritual and political beliefs on you, unless you are involved in an activity attacking them. Then, you will hear from me.
I will not base any of this on your religious affiliation, (or lack thereof), your sexual preference, or your political ideology.
Are you responsible and mature enough to do the same in return, even if you disagree with me?
(The following is a rant I posted on Facebook on April 10, 2013. I’m posting it here for those who may have missed it)
I’ve felt a good rant coming on for weeks on a variety of topics, but I’ve pretty much kept it all in. At least in an online format.
I must say that the recent controversial comments in the MSNBC ad by Melissa Harris-Perry have challenged my restraint.
Whether you agree or disagree with her view, I just have this to say. Your kids are not my responsibility. They are not the community’s responsibility.
They are yours.
The community is made up of individuals. These individuals are as different and diverse as the stars. No two are alike. No two agree on everything, and no two see things exactly the same way. There is commonality, and there is contrast in each of us. We all have different gifts, talents, temperaments, weaknesses, vulnerabilities and experiences. Our experiences influence the expression of our innate tendencies. Our experiences often shape what direction we go in our lives.
My responsibility is to take all that I have experienced and learned in my life, and be a contributing member of the community. Because I know probably less than 1 percent of the population of my community, perhaps my greatest contribution is by getting out of the way of others in their pursuit of happiness. To those I know, my responsibility is to be the best me I can be.
My parents raised me with core values. They taught me the real meaning of responsibility, and it always came down to me.
No one else.
If I had a bad teacher, that didn’t give me an excuse to be an idiot. If I had a rotten neighbor, that wasn’t an open door for me to be a criminal.
Take responsibility for yourself and the ones who depend on you. Don’t rely on “the village”. If you do, you relinquish the right to complain about what happens next.