Day 1119 Cultural Shift

The Defining Dignity Initiative, an Essay by Matt DeHart

Today is Saturday. Today, I received a letter from my autistic friend, Chad. He shared with me how he house to get up at 3 a.m. in the morning to make it to breakfast, or he will not get fed because they run out of food later in the morning. He doesn’t get to eat again until late afternoon or early evening.

I’ve been listening to the political rhetoric. Some progressives seem genuine while others appear as billboard ads for Wall Street. Even if there are progressives with noble intentions to change failing and corrupt systems, I don’t believe it is possible; at least not without the support of the public.

I believe what is needed, what is imperative, is a cultural shift towards community, kindness, and basic human dignity.

It should never be said of any human being, “They are not people, they are just animals.” That kind of hateful speech lead the Nazi party of Germany to look at Jews as vermin or rats. The Rwandan government called the Tutsi people cockroaches. Dehumanization leads to atrocities.

The media is supposed to be informing us about the injustices and holding those in power accountable. Instead, we have obscenely paid talking heads of corporate media spoon feeding us fluff, fear, and sanctioned government propaganda. Independent journalists, who participate in honest investigative journalism, are smeared, persecuted, threatened, imprisoned, or worse murdered.

We the people, have to move beyond fear. Unless we throw off the hatred, the violence, the greed and the apathy that infest us, we will not see an end to the violence, the cruelty, and the abject failure of our justice system.

Some of our pet cats eat better on Friskies than our fellow human beings; brothers and sisters eat in prison.

We are influenced by words, by ideas. We have to change, even forcibly, our fierce desire to believe that punishment, war, and discrimination works. They haven’t. They don’t. They won’t.

Chad is only 27 years old and he communicates like an 11 year old. He has been terribly wrong by so many who are nothing more than selfish cowards. He is in prison and he will probably be there for the next 20 years. He has asked me again and again how will he ever make it. I cry from my soul every time I think about him and others.

Love is a choice. Love is an action. Love gives second chances. Love finds a way to save, not destroy. Love seeks truth.

#Peace.

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