This month we learned that the fine line between freedom of speech and bullying is the same line between flirting and sexual harassment...and that line is ignorance.
For those of you that know me well, you have heard my tirades on ignorance first hand. They aren’t pretty, but they are honest and to the point. I have no stomach for it and feel it is the root-of-all-evil in the world we live in today.
By definition, ignorance is lack of knowledge, education, or awareness.
Seems simple enough and an easy task to overcome, yes? Then why are there more and more daily accounts of its abuse in this world?
In my writing, my anger and disgust for the many levels of ignorance I see each day is very apparent; readers have told me that I make a very strong point of my opinions in my words. The Dante Chronicles is full of examples of my distaste: a family torn apart because a political faction believes “differently” than they do, Hybrids afraid to expose their true nature to each other for fear of being turned away and unaccepted, a little girl, shunned and called horrible names by her own grandmother because she isn’t the right color, are only a few examples. These examples come from real life. Whether my own or others around me, they are things I’ve seen, and or experienced, and I am appalled.
In the news, newspapers, periodicals, on television and radio, there are depictions of ignorance on a regular basis: passionate public figures, advocates and activists speaking without thoroughly thinking their thoughts through, celebrities caught off guard who nervously speak without taking a breath to steady their thoughts, and everyday ‘Joe’s’ who speak honestly and from the heart, but don’t quite get the right words out. It happens. Each and every day, this action occurs at one point or another. But ignorance is a two sided coin.
For every action, there is a separate reaction.
It’s when this act of ignorance is met with a reaction of ignorance that wars are waged, deep unending lines are drawn and physical and emotional damage is incurred. Pointless acts of cowardice and retaliation, all because the people involved forgot to do one, simple thing.
They forgot to breathe.
Breathing in no way defeats ignorance completely, but it does humanize you; allowing you a moment of momentum, a chance for clarity to know when enough is enough, the attention needed to pick and choose your battles, and in fact, learn that you are not God.
Here’s hoping that you and those around you remember to take a moment, and just breathe...