Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Dear Mrs. _____ - An Open Letter About Love and Hate

Dear Mrs. _____,

I am distressed today because I read the diatribe you posted on Facebook lambasting the high school graduation.  Yes, even though you and I are not friends in any social media network and even though you apparently took the posting down, I still got to read your hateful words.  And, as a result, there are a few things I would like you to know.

The first thing is that I absolutely and positively back your right to post whatever message you wish to convey on your social media pages.  I am a huge supporter of freedom of expression, and I welcome any and all to contribute to the community of social discourse created by the internet.  The main reason I feel so strongly about it is that I also wholeheartedly believe a person's words will ultimately reveal who he/she truly is.  I wonder if you realize what your words say about you.

In your statements, you complained about the speeches given by the guest speaker and one of the students at the graduation.  Admittedly, I wasn't there and didn't hear the speeches, so I have no way of judging the overall quality of any of them, but I am concerned that your additional comments on the matter only addressed one statement from the guest-speaker's speech and, most alarmingly, actually attacked the graduating student for something completely unrelated to what he had to say.

And that brings me to the second thing I wish to say to you: as a Christian and an educator, I am dismayed that you felt the need to verbally attack a teenage boy, a student who, by all accounts, is a credit to the high school, all for something as trivial as wearing eye make-up.  Yes, you got in a dig about his bringing up a particularly sensitive issue (and perhaps made a valid point about it being inappropriate for a graduation speech), but you seemed more offended that he was wearing glitter eye make-up and that school officials did nothing to stop him.

I have to say, Mrs. _____, that your statements do not reflect anything that I've ever learned and experienced about Christian love and understanding.  I don't know what in your life has caused you to take such a stance of judgment and disapproval against your fellow human beings, but I pray that you find peace and love in your life so that you will no longer feel the need to attack and condemn those around you, especially young people.

So, the last thing I want you to know, Mrs. _____, is that you will be in my prayers.  I pray for your peace, your health, and your prosperity.  I also pray that your hateful, bullying words (words, I hope, you will prove to be better than) did not unduly reach impressionable ears.  We've had enough teen suicides resulting from hate speech, and I'm sure we can both agree that we don't need anymore.  And, finally, I pray that those attacked by the hateful words of others find the love and support they need to carry on and bring something special into this world and that they help stamp out ignorance and intolerance wherever they find them.

Steve Givens

1 comment:

  1. Perfectly said, as usual. People who do things like this are, in my opinion, coming from a place of fear and unhappiness that has everything to do with them and very litte to do with the person they're attacking. Wishing them peace and love is wishing them everything they need. :)


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