WHAT ARE YOU DOING to promote civil discourse?

By Gail Beeker

WHERE are the roots of the current hatred, white SUPERIORITY and nationalism, abuse and violence against fellow human beings as if they’re to be feared and obliterated? Over the last few decades, millions of people in this country, people of ALL skin colors, thought we’d finally gained enough understanding of one another and faith in God to turn our hearts, minds and actions toward achieving or maintaining peaceful, decent lives for many, not just a few who considered themselves entitled to the disadvantage of anyone who gets in their way.

The FIRST definition of “prejudice” as a noun is “preconceived opinion that is not based on reason or actual experience”… synonymous with preconceived idea, preconception, prejudgment. Did you ever notice that once you get to know someone in person who fit any of your categories of “those people”, your opinion evolves as you deal with an expanded reality. It may be a neighbor, school friend, work colleague, or perhaps a member of your very own family. I saw this happen in my church community when a beloved son revealed his sexual preference to his family as a young adult. The family ostracized him for many months, but as time went on, their understanding of God’s love eventually allowed them to LOVE that son again as God loves HIS people! We people on earth are ALL God’s “people”, and that is the basis for the founding of THIS country, that all “men”, i.e. humans, are created equal

There are apparently many in these United States who feel that “equal rights” have left out the “white people” and “taken away OUR country” to the benefit of people prejudged to be ‘unworthy’ of living a decent life here. WHAT? What color was the skin of the people and what was the nature of the lifestyles obliterated by European immigrants centuries ago? Were WE white Europeans REALLY superior beings entitled to take that away and claim this United States as “ours” only?

As the leadership of this country is in chaos, unable to attend to serious matters needing their attention due to the country’s response to the very prejudice, bullying, hatred and violence this leadership is modeling and encouraging, it is crucial for EACH of us to SPEAK UP. There are many movements and efforts to counter this leadership and bring back civility and understanding. CBS Television has helped publicize information by talking with people from several areas of society who are reaching out to Make America Civil Again. Check out www.thepeoplessupper.org, a community effort expanding across the country to build better communities through conversation, heal and build bridges over a meal, get to know the humans behind those stereotypes fashioned in our minds. The Price Waterhouse chairman was interviewed in person to share their efforts by giving employees permission to speak up, discussing the specifics of integrity, building trust through how they treat one another AND the community, all of which they recognize lead “to innovation, development, progress, action …!” Watch the interview at PWC Chairman on Diversity Push and Oscars mix-up and view detail at Ethics Business with Code of Conduct.

Don’t be discouraged! Stay with www.MakeAmericaCivilAgain.com to spread the knowledge, practice the techniques and gain deeper understanding through churches into our local communities. Consider sharing the Price Waterhouse examples with YOUR employer … or connect with The Peoples Supper to bring their efforts where they’re needed – at the local level. These problems concern all of us greatly. Join in helping to regain our balance as a GOOD place to live, raise our children and enjoy the bounties of this country with ALL who want only to live in decency, respect and peace.