We Are All Human
To See All Humanity as Equal Is the Only Way to Peace
The way that society functions as a whole today is on an entirely different level than any other previous generation that has graced this Earth. The things that humans can do in today's age is fascinating. The technology we have is almost unearthly at times. The access to food and water, to healthcare, to places once unreachable. Humans today have traveled to other celestial bodies. We have been able to accomplish amazing architectural feats. Human society on a physical level seems as superior as ever. However, like a coin, there is always another side to it.
The way society acts on an emotional level today is something that should be observed as well. There are times when you see how people treat other people. There is hatred and separation. There is distrust and fear. Values once held dear are lost and replaced with new inconsequential cultural trends. People are so engrossed in things with little to no value. Cars, phones, clothes, gadgets, and gizmos. Sure, they have value in the moment, but, in the end, what are they really worth?
Let's go through a scenario. You just bought these $400 shoes online that make your legs and butt look amazing and you cannot wait to wear them to your date. Though, on the way to the mall where you will pick them up, you passed a homeless man. He disgusting to you with his filthy appearance. You assume he must be a drug addict or something. You assume that if you give him dollar that he will just run off and use it to buy drugs or alcohol. You continue inside, make your purchase, and quickly go to your car avoiding any eye contact with the man.
Now, I am not saying you should have given the man the $400 instead. That is not what I’m saying. I understand that sometimes there may be a reluctance to give up money due to the fact that you do not know that person's character. Maybe you had no cash on you. Maybe you were in a hurry. Let me show you another path that could have been taken.
It is cold outside. Around 45 degrees. You have gotten out of your heated car and are on your way into a heated building. You see that homeless man. He is bundled up in what seems like worn out old coats, hats, and gloves. He looks as if he hasn’t bathed in weeks. He holds a simple cardboard sign that reads, "homeless, anything is appreciated, God Bless." Instead of feeling disgusted you feel sad for him. Here you are on your way to get $400 shoes that you may wear one time and then throw into your closet or let your best girlfriend wear them and he is sitting there with absolutely nothing. You have so much to be grateful for. But you hesitate, what if he is a drug addict? What if he is an alcoholic? You shiver from the cold and hurry inside the building.
You go to the shop and find your shoes and pick them up. The homeless man has not left your thoughts the entire trip. You start for the exit when you pass the Starbucks inside the mall. You decide that a warm, hot chocolate will be just the thing. While you are in line you notice that it has gotten slightly darker, and inevitably colder. You think back to the homeless man. He must be very cold out there. Has he had anything to eat today? Anything to drink? The barista pulls you out of your thinking and asks for your order. You hesitate but a moment before asking for two Grande Hot Chocolates.
You head outside of the building walking quickly with the two hot drinks. You hope that he is still there. You look to where he was but find it empty. You glance around and see that he has moved to the other side of a pillar, to shield himself from the night wind that has picked up. You approach him cautiously, making sure he notices you coming. You only smile and stretch out one of the cups. He looks at it and looks at you. You see the distrust, the caution. He takes the cup from you and can feel the warmth through his thin gloves. You sip your drink and he, in turn, sips his. He smiles and you can see the contented look on his face from the warmth that is spreading through his belly and chest. You smile wider at him as he thanks you and you wave goodbye before heading back to your car.
Now, there are other things that could have been done. Maybe instead of a mall it was near a McDonalds and you were buying yourself lunch. What’s an extra $3 to give someone a meal? Or perhaps you saw it was really windy outside and you know you have a blanket in your trunk that no one has used or touched in months. Or you have a packed lunch with you that you could give and then go spend the $3-5 to go feed yourself later.
There are so many things that humans could do for other people, not just homeless people. There are probably friends of yours that are suffering quietly, coworkers, friends of your children. There are so many people in the world hurting.
There are people who will argue. Why should I give up my stuff for some random stranger? Why don’t they go get a job? Why don’t they do this or that? Well, that’s easy to say from the outside looking in. Some people are in their positions due to personal choices that are their fault. They made bad decisions they shouldn’t have. Frivolous spending, drug use, alcoholism, etc. However, what about the man that got laid off from his job? He didn’t choose that. The woman with the abusive husband that did a complete 180 on her after they got married? How could she have predicted that? The man whose wife left him and took the kids because she was simply bored in her relationship? Was that all his fault?
People will say that there were probably signs to their impending disasters and that they should have been smart enough to see them coming. Did you see the signs of every bad thing coming towards you? Did you see the signs before every mistake, every heartbreak, every betrayal? Did you see them coming? Neither did they.
I am not saying that you should give everything you own away to people. I understand that sometimes you don’t have much to give. Giving your all and all you have may also put you into that same position. You can still help people. Even if it’s not material things. Maybe a small conversation. Taking them somewhere they feel safe and asking them how they are doing? Just showing some form of compassion and kindness can help more than any amount of money ever could. If you were in those positions, would you hope that someone would help you? Would you hope that someone would take the time or the small amount of money to reach out and help you up when you have fallen down? Would you hope that someone would see you as another human being?
WE ARE ALL HUMAN. It is time that we started seeing that.