It seems lately I am “not allowed” to care about anything without someone saying I care about the wrong thing or that I must also make it clear that I care about something else more.
I am not allowed to care about the Paris attacks unless I have already made it clear that I care about the Beirut attacks, the attacks in Turkey or any other attack in any other area of the world.
Some don’t want me to change my profile picture to the French flag unless I also have changed it to the flag of Isreal.
We are not supposed to care for the refugees because there are homeless veterans or (once again) aborted babies.
I am not supposed to care about what the black students experience on our college campuses because there are soldiers who have lost life, limb and sanity fighting at our request.
Etc., etc., ad nauseam.
How is it that all of a sudden compassion, caring and courage have all become competitive sports? Something to be won at the expense of others? Has it come to this? Are all our best qualities now just another thing to use against one another? Is empathy about the “right” things, people and situations now just a way to say “I WIN!”. How sad.
Perhaps, just perhaps, courage, empathy, compassion and the rest of our virtues are not a competition at all. Perhaps, like love, they are not an apple pie with only so many slices to go around. Perhaps, as we voice our care and concern, our admiration and respect, these things do not diminish but rather multiply. Maybe we could all try to recognize that just because someone says one thing is tragic (for example, the attacks in Paris) does not mean that they do not also believe that other things are just as and sometimes much more tragic; that just because we believe one person exhibits courage, does not mean others have not and do not exhibit courage and sometimes in greater measure.
What if instead, we mourn every death? Celebrate every act of courage? Call out every injustice? Recognize every act of altruism? What if we actually believed that humanity’s best qualities could multiply with use and worst qualities would necessarily and absolutely atrophy in the presence of love?
What kind of world would that be?
A better one I think.
(This post is an Update of my previous post Dammit! I Care More About the Right Things Than You Do which I wrote after the death of Cecil the Lion.)
One thought on “Paris Edition: Dammit! I care more (about the right things) than you do.”
I believe that each human has human limits. Each human’s brain, heart, soul, body, spirit, feelings- these are all limited.
We each cannot care deeply, think deeply, love deeply, act strongly, on each and every tragedy and injustice that occurs worldwide. Taking on too much emotionally actually harms an individual emotionally and physically.
This is me, honoring and recognizing how God made the human body and mind. While we are on this earth, we have a limited capacity.
Trying to “win” in the Ultra Caring Olympics is futile.
However, God made us to connect with Him and others, to love, to care.
We need to care as much as we can for all.
We need to care more specifically where He leads each of us.
Putting our active energy in the specific area in which He has prepared good works and caring for each of us to do?
That is where the best results will be.
God has people for every single concern. I think that a daily prayer might be that He is there for all who are hurting, and that the help is on its way to all who need help.
We also need to put our energies and sharing of thoughts and opinions to good use- sometimes, that may mean curbing them.
Thank you for your post. God is the only One who can completely and deeply care and act on each and every situation, from the largest to the tiniest.
I do care about all sides of these huge issues, because I know God does.
I also know that I’m not going to win the Ultra Caring Olympics.