I usually like to write about things that make me laugh, or things that I love but I've had something on my mind that I felt needed to be said.
A couple of days ago 14 year old David Q. Phan committed suicide, not too many miles from where I live. It was all over the news, and you can read the article here:
This news was heartbreaking to hear and has been weighing on my mind ever since I heard it.
Students at his junior high said that David was a kid that was always happy, and always nice to everyone. His friends also told news outlets that he was often bullied for being gay.
Here is a 14 year old boy whose life became so unbearably painful that he just couldn't go on. Whether the bullying was a direct cause or not we may never know. Whether he was gay or not, we may never know. But the fact is, that this happens everywhere, everyday.
It's easy for us adults to wonder how kids can be so cruel to one another. We ask ourselves what we can do to get our our kids to treat each other with more respect. We point the finger from a supposed position of innocence crying "this bullying must stop!"
The sad truth, that I've witnessed, is that it's the adults who are often the biggest bullies.
We judge each other in the name of religion. We judge each other based on our own political beliefs.
I believe that God put some people on this earth for the purpose of teaching others to love.
It's harder for some of us to love those who are different. We search for religious reasons to back up our discomfort. We foolishly tell ourselves that if our religious/political beliefs can back up our reason to hate, that it isn't hate at all.
Talking down about someone is never okay. Talking about someones inherent traits as if they are is "evil" or "wrong" is never okay.
Our kids hear the way we speak with disgust about others who may not fit into our mold of what we think is right or wrong. They hear and repeat the things we say.
I'm sitting here typing, with tears streaming down my face, because this means so much to me.
I almost lost someone very close to me, on two separate occasions for reasons similar to this. I will never forget the feeling. The feeling of knowing that someone that I love, and love dearly, almost left this earth because their God given differences, were too much of a burden to bear.
He deeply feared that the people in his life wouldn't accept him for who he is, because of religious beliefs. He felt, because of hateful things other adults had said, that everyone would be better off without a gay man in their life.
It's not right, and it's not fair.
No one should feel that way.
Why can't we celebrate our differences? Why can't we love with open arms instead?
In my heart I believe that love is always the answer. From my experiences in life, I believe that my God will never be disappointed by his children showing love, and non-judgmental acceptance of one another.
Love is more important than being right. It's as simple as that.
I know I can do better, and I will try every single day.
Please feel free to share this post with others, and share your experiences in the comments below.