Posts Tagged ‘respect

27
Jan
09

Two-fer Tuesday: Respect by Miz Pink

pink-warriorwomenIs respect soooooo hard to come by these days? If you think my hair is interesting, in style or texture or the little hint of pink in there, do you really think you can just come on up and touch it? Yuck! Because some of y’all do and it makes me upset.

If you have to start out by saying…I don’t mean to offend…or This is probably a nosy question…or anything like that, that should already be a tip-off that you’re about to say something you really shouldn’t say. Or at the very least, you shouldn’t be surprised if I still get mad even after you went and telegraphed your nosiness or rudeness or ignorance in the hopes that I’d just let you off the hook.

Is it so darn hard to address me with respect instead of calling me Sweetie or Hon? (Only relatives and Sir Pink can get away with that stuff)

When we post online and go to Facebook and stuff, do you really have to let all of us know intimate details of what you’re up to right now? Just because someone’s your Facebook friends doesn’t mean they want to know your pelvis is really sore or that you just cleaned a bunch of gunk out of your toenails or whatever.

I kinda figured that as we slowly broke down old prejudices a bit and started thinking a bit more in terms of actual equality among men and women and different races and even different classes….well, I though maybe we’d see more respect.

I don’t know if it’s just something about our human nature or if the Internet has just made it easy to stop caring about manners or what, but give me some R-E-S-P-E-C-T.

And everyone else, too.

20
Jul
08

The Human Stain

If you’re reasonably well read or have seen CSI or Law & Order or some similar show on TV at least once, you porbably know that something like a blood stain on a wall can tell forensics experts a lot. It can tell you from what direction a shot was fired, from what angle, from what height, from what distance, and all sorts of other good stuff—or, well, bad stuff…but useful stuff all the same.

Simpler stains can tell us things, too. A big old coffee stain on that important signed paperwork on your desk may be a sign that you need to be less sloppy or start keeping your coffee and your papers on separate surfaces. An ink stain in your shirt pocket is a good sign that you need a new pen. A lipstick stain on a collar all too often tells a wife that her husband ain’t doing right while he’s outside the home. A pee stain on the carpet tells us either the new puppy needs a bit more house training or that someone in the house has taken serious leave of both their senses and their bladder control.

We need to look at our stains.

What stains have we left in life? Why? Where? Who is affected by them? Whom have we stained directly? What can we do about them or what should we do about them?

Obviously, I’m talking metaphorical stains now. And I mention them because when we look ourselves and what we do in life, we generally give ourselves a pass. I examine myself and my motivations and I see a guy who’s in the right. You do the same thing, probably, most of the time. Truth is, we are usually pretty poor at locating and recognizing our own worst faults. Even the worst villains in the world still generally believe that they are doing what is right and proper, if not for society than for the most important people in the world: Themselves.

I say that we need to look at the people around us and see if they are stained. And then we need to establish if that stain was our fault. And if so, fix it.

If your child is suddenly acting odd and not speaking right and seems nervous around you, maybe it’s time to evaluate whether you’ve been putting undue pressure on that child or being rotten to that child or perhaps not spending quality time with that child.

If your co-workers seem to get quiet when you enter the room or don’t seem to want to socialize with you, maybe you should ascertain whether or not you are a jerk at work.

If your spouse is emotionally distant maybe you need to examine if you’ve been open enough emotionally and whether you are doing right by your spouse.

It might turn out that you aren’t the problem, or at least that perhaps you’re only part of it. And even if you aren’t the problem, identifying a stain on someone’s life presents you with an opportunity to help that person get past it and clean one piece of crap off their life’s problems. Bonus karma!

But it may also turn out that you have to admit you’ve done wrong, and realize you aren’t always such the good person you think you are.

The problem is, we’ll seldom see our failings in the mirror. The best place to see them is often in the behaviors and actions of those whom we interact with daily. Those people are the mirrors we need to look into.

Look deep.

12
Jul
08

Guilt Trips by Miz Pink

Why do so many people think that Christians exist only to make them feel bad about themselves? Yeah I know the concept of “original sin” sounds icky and doesn’t sit well with alot of people.

Yeah some Chrsitian folk can get all highandmighty and catalog all your sins while acting as if they have none of their own.

Yeah, some preachers like to trumpet the fire and brimstone and remind you all day long that you’re a pitiful excuse for a Christian…or a human…and that you should feel fortunate that God even offers you eternity in hell for your sins instead of just obliterating you right now.

The Chrisitians who go overboard don’t define us all you know. As human beings we are a pretty sinful lot and we really don’t treat God’s laws or even his planet…or ourselves for that matter…or other people with the respect that we need to. But when the Bible…or a well-meaning Christian…points out that people sin and that we sin against God all the time, it isn’t meant to give us a guilt trip.

Deke is pretty comfortable bringing out the family and parenting metaphors when talking about God so let me do it too, okay? I’ll even change the standin for God and have it be a mother in our little story.

So, imagine we have a guy name Stan whose mother is named Dorothy. Dorothy has raised Stan alone and although she thought discpline was an important character trait, she also loved him and provided for him. Dorothy gave up something very important to her in order to make a good life for Stan. From time to time, she would talk about her past and drop hints about what she had given up. But she never made a big point of it and she never tried to guilt her son.

Stan almost never really followed any of his mom’s rules. He lied to her alot and took things from her and talked about her behind her back and ridiculed her and ignored her. He spent more time disrepecting her than he did showing love back to her. And even as she took most of the disobedience and abuse in silence, Stan never stopped heaping more of it onto her back.

One day, some relatives who were sick and tired of Stan dumping on his mom…and who were also concerned about where Stan’s life was going to go if he wasn’t going to internalize any of his mom’s good advice…took him aside and pointed out to him that he wasn’t doing right. A couple of them might have even suggested that at the rate he was going, Stan would be really lucky if his mom even left him anything when she died or instead just give it all to a charity or something.

That’s the end of my story. No trick ending or witty conclusion. That’s it. Does it ring any bells?

God lets us make our own beds, and he often helps up out of our messes. He takes our abuse and disoebedience quietly. He gave his only son over to evil people to suffer a horrible death he didn’t deserve and to bear all our sins…just because he loved us that much. He gave up something important for us so taht we could have a future and still we don’t even try to meet God halfway most of the time. We ignore and insult and disobey. And we expect to be given a big inheritance because we think “we were pretty good people in the end.”

Stan may have treated alot of other people okay in life, but the parent who gave him everything certainly never got back the love she had earned and deserved.

Then again, maybe he finally did learn to to give her back that love and to finally listen to her…once those relatives pulled his ear a bit and set him straight on a few facts.

Oh, and those relatives would be concerned Christians who are trying to save souls and to get people who are saved to stay on the straight and narrow as much as possible.

Yeah, some of those relatives were probably assholes to Stan. But some of them really meant well and were nice about telling him what was what. Most Stans don’t listen to even the nice ones, though, do they?

How about you?




Deacon Blue is the blogging persona of editor and writer Jeffrey Bouley. The opinions of Jeff himself on this blog, and those expressed as Deacon Blue, in NO WAY should be construed as the opinions of anyone with whom he has worked, currently works, or will work with in the future. They are personal opinions and views, and are sometimes, frankly, expressed in more outrageous terms than I truly feel most days.

Jeff Bouley

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Jeff Bouley

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