A show of hands

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A show of hands, please. What do you believe in? What are your values? What do you believe is at the heart of human nature?

What kind of world do you want to live in?

Here is what I say.

There are more people who want to act out love than hate.

There are more people who are neither Red nor Blue, no matter where they live.

There are way more people who are not fundamentalist than those who are.

There are more people who prize the values of tolerance, openness, and friendship over money, consumerism, and dogma.

There are more people who want our leaders and institutions to make the health and safety of our bodies and our planet their first priority than there are those who want to pillage both for their own benefit.

There are more of us who are willing to make some sacrifices for the greater good and than those who believe we are in this alone.

We stand by the principle that all persons have the right to choose their own belief system as long as it does not include violence against others.

We hold achievement and abundance as high priorities, but not at the expense of family, friendship, love, joy, raising healthy children, and the creation of a world of opportunity for all.

These—family, love, self-expression, creating goodness for ourselves and others, and tolerance—are the true American values. Beyond this, they are human values.

We want to restore sanity to our systems of governance, education, and commerce. We can do it because wherever lives a person who wants to abuse or kill others, there are countless others who do not.

For every businessperson who lines his or her pockets at the expense of others (or even of our very planet), there are five who give back.

For every self-interested, disingenuous politician, there are ten who would take elective office for the greater good.

And for every cynic who believes that power-grabbing and violence are simply human nature, that any person in position of power or influence would turn on his fellow man, I say there are a million who try to do otherwise everyday. I am one. You are too.

A show of hands, please.

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13 Comments

  1. Megan Elizabeth Morris { 05.02.13 at 3:39 pm }

    Yes! Many, many times, yes. I believe that the strength of connection is far more powerful than the strength of corruption — any day.

  2. Patricia Martin { 05.03.13 at 9:07 am }

    My hand is raised. If we ascribe to others the positive characteristics, rather than assume the negative, we all benefit. I will try to focus on the basic goodness in people.

    • susan { 05.03.13 at 11:33 am }

      This is better than great. It can actually change everything.

  3. Craig { 05.03.13 at 11:10 am }

    Yes, 3 cheers.

  4. Barbara Cook { 05.04.13 at 12:47 pm }

    So hopeful, so needed. Thank you!

  5. Jill Salahub { 05.05.13 at 9:10 am }

    *raises hand and waves wildly*

  6. Susan { 05.20.13 at 11:49 am }

    Wise words, Susan, and ones we need more of to drown out the sea of skepticism, negativism, and sensationalism often surrounding us in the mass media. As a Canadian, I have always been puzzled by the “pursuit of happiness”, as well, as we know that is a contradiction in terms, and very likely to result in fleeting impermanent conditional happiness at best.

    • susan { 05.21.13 at 6:24 am }

      glad we’re on the same page…

  7. Alfred { 05.25.13 at 4:19 am }

    I have sent an email to you where ı briefly sketches what I have been exposed to in supposedly democratic countries , Norway , Sweden , Ukraine and Turkey . I hope you have time to read it . The problem is simple . society is divided , ın an open and rather fair part and a hidden and totalitarian section governed by the law of the jungle . unfortunately 99,9 percent of the population accept this system and accept the irom wall around what is going on inside the secret state .

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