“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
My approach with this post is two pronged. It will discuss hatred and education. I hope to show how the two coincide.
Regarding education: Can we please all agree to stop believing everything we see on Facebook? I saw an article today about The Salvation Army and its stance on the LGBTQ community. This article came equipped with a picture of two women raising money for the Salvation Army in front of a sign reading “No Gays Allowed.” It also listed quotes from a member of the Salvation Army advising that gay people should die.
Sigh. Okay, does this sound insane to you? When you read this, don’t you just think, “hey, this sounds ridiculous. There’s no way that a multinational organization, even if they believed it to be true, would put itself out there as a hate group.” That’s what I thought. So, I did more or less two google searches which equaled about 3 minutes and 47 seconds of “research” about this. The truth about this article is that (gasp!) it’s not entirely true. First, the picture of the women that accompanies the article: photoshopped. Second, the Salvation Army’s belief that homosexuals should die: not really true. The remarks made by a Salvation Army official did happen, but they were quickly condemned by the organization. Allegedly, one goofball from the organization misunderstood the doctrine of the group and fired off at the mouth.
(Note: Before I go further, I am aware that the Salvation Army has drawn the ire of the LGBTQ community in the past for unrelated issues. I’ve done my homework. I am also aware of the proverbial “where there’s smoke there’s fire” belief. I’m not championing the Salvation Army. If their stances on homosexuality are what I think they are, I wouldn’t put my support anywhere near them. Don’t misconstrue it. I’m discussing one specific thing here. Let me make my point first.)
So, in a situation like this, when we continue to let crap like this to be spread and believed, what’s the end result? A lack of education and the spread of hatred. If people are taking the article at face value, (which, judging by the amount of shares I’ve seen on my Facebook wall, they are), we’re spreading a message of hate and lies. Also, if people aren’t taking the time to find out actual facts, we’re missing a prime opportunity for education. In essence, my point is that lack of education only serves to breed hate.
Hate cannot be cured or offset by more hate. It just fuels it. Dr. King knew that. In his words: “Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” I legitimately cannot understand why we lack the ability to accept people for exactly what they are. Why do we feel the need to ostracize or belittle those that fall outside what we have deemed the “norm”, “societally acceptable”, or (sigh, again) “moral”? Human beings are not and cannot be the moral judge of others. We’re not built for hatred. Well, at least we weren’t intended to be. We don’t have to be.
Educate yourself. Learn to accept people. Let go of the hate. It’s pointless.
We are better than this.
Have an awesome Tuesday,