Thursday, September 20, 2018

Essays for my children: Life is about perspective

Maddie and Gracie,

You have asked me numerous questions about the political journey our country has travelled and, in considering your questions, I have had to engage my mind as well as my heart. In my responses, I have endeavored to see the world through your eyes and explain my insights by visualizing the realities of people I have never been and through experiences I have never lived.

In this contemplation, I realize that few things in life have ever been denied me. The reality of this world sees opportunities abound for a caucasian male born to a loving, two parent, middle class home on the Northeastern coast of the United States. So how could I possibly explain the reality of others to my children when I have never been another race or color. I have never been from another culture or raised in another religion. I have never been another gender or orientation. I have never been disabled, destitute, or devoid of hope. I have never had opportunities restricted due to my age, nationality, or status. I have never been persecuted, ostracized, or segregated. I have never known a fractured home, a family divided, or what is to be a child abandoned. I have never been condemned or hated for the simple virtue of being born into this existence.

So, without the wisdom from a diversity of experiences, I have answered you with the guidance that I was fortunate to receive when I was a child. I mentored you to use reason, facts, dignity, empathy, love, and compassion to understand the struggles, beliefs, and perspectives of others. I encourage you to absorb as much knowledge as is available before arriving at an opinion. I counsel you to keep your minds open to include new interactions that may challenge your interpretations and alter your conclusions.

Above all else, I teach you to embrace people for who WE ALL are - complex, diverse, and amazing human beings. 

Love Aways,