What Difference Does It Make

A few days ago I received an interesting comment from someone regarding the blog itself, not an individual post. Out of all of the comments I’ve received on this blog this one actually irritated me. I was going to dismiss it, but after thinking about what was said it almost demanded a response. So I say this with discretion; because I’m sure there will be at least one person that will misinterpret what I’m saying while applying their own assumptions distorting the meaning of the message.

If the person who asked what difference does it make, here’s my response.

We are tempted to impose our ethical, moral, social, religious and non-religious standards upon other people. We live in an ethically, morally, culturally and spiritually pluralistic society. We are all inescapably bound to a network of mutuality. We will never get out of what we find ourselves in until we work together. We can not walk alone on this Jericho road of life.

I refuse to be governed by someone who believes or speaks against my choice to embrace hope instead of fears, unity of purpose over conflict and discord. Why should I continue to engage in petty grievances, false allegations, scrupulous accusations and failed doctrines? When we look beyond ourselves and our own private ambitions to enact our own public policy perhaps we will see the results we desire. Now I’m not speaking of a political policy, but a purpose, cause, objective that spans beyond our own benefit.

An unnamed person recently gave me what my mother would call a backhanded compliment. The person told me that I have a big imagination, ambitious dreams and a desire to change the world. Which is true, but it was the second party of their compliment that made it backhanded. Besides the comment of being “surprisingly articulate for a Black man”, which I could really say something about that statement, but what differences does it make. They said that I can’t change the world and I’m foolish for thinking that I can change a person with inspiring words. People are going to do what they want to do and I can’t stop them.

Well it is true that people will do what they want to do and I can not stop them, but I think you’re mistaken when you say that one can not change the world. One can and several have. What differences will it make if I list a few of these individuals? I can have a dream to walk on the moon and free a people to protest for equal rights, but that’s just the audacity of my hope. Finally what difference does it make if a person regardless of their color makes daily attempts to articulate his thoughts, ideas and suggestions to those willing to consider them?

What many of us fail to consider is that the world around them keeps moving even if they choose to stand still. The evidence smacks each of us in the face everyday. Those who fail to move forward will soon find themselves being left behind. We must end our perpetual arguments and find a solution or common ground before we are the ones being left behind.

If we are to have any level of progress or a measure of success we must learn to openly, honestly and with sincerity be willing to engage each other with dignity and respect. We can do this not out of charity, but because it’s for our common good.

The false idea that I should not have a relationship whether it is professional, social or romantic with someone because of the misplaced value of our individual characteristics your time is over. What differences does it make?

Perhaps I’m naïve to believe that I can find mutual interest and have mutual respect with individuals not like myself. But just like the zebras and the lions, neither wants to see the forest burn. We all have something in common.

So for those who blame society’s ills on people other than themselves I ask you to consider yourselves. People will judge you on what you do, not on what you say. What are you doing to heal those ills?

It is only when you decide to extend your hand instead of clinching your fist that any work will get done. Open your mind, consider others and silence yourself long enough to hear the meaning of the message.

I understand and appreciate your critique of this blog. I agree with parts of it, because I do get tired of the misunderstandings and indifference. I often ask myself, what differences does it make? Only a handful of people seem to care, they just see it as entertainment and not education of a person’s point-of-view. Why don’t I just end this or begin to talk about frivolous things that only amount to fluff.

Well due to a couple of recent events that all connect to this blog; I now understand that’s not my purpose. Out of privacy and respect I will not offer detail, but I will say this. My thoughts, ideas and suggestions may not mean anything to you and this blog appears to just be a good creative writing exercise to you. Despite your harsh, but creative criticisms I know that what I do is not in vain.

So what differences does it make? Good question. I don’t know if this response is sufficient, but based off of my experiences, kind and inspiring responses and the friendships developed has been the difference between me allowing the calm toned clandestine comments of one suggesting I end this blog and the smile I have when I receive a reply via email, twitter, instant message or just a shout-out on another blog.

About this time last year I would have offered a much different response that would have matched the sarcasm of your comments, but what differences would it make?



7 thoughts on “What Difference Does It Make

  1. Tim, what that person did with their response was prove your point. It proves there are still plenty of people out there that need to be enlightened, because they obviously haven’t had much exposure to the full spectrum of Black people. We are not all on Maury looking for our “baby daddy.” Ignorance comes in all shades, races, etc.

    Before anything manifests, it begins as a dream, a thought or an idea in someone’s mind.

    One thing about the internet—it will bring you in contact with people from many different backgrounds that you might not otherwise meet. Hopefully that person will continue to stop by and visit—and actually learn something new. People change all the time, if they want to.

    A so Tim, keep on doing what you’re doing, Black man.

    1. Well you already know I got you’re back. I greatly appreciate your supportive and encouraging words. I simply try to offer a different point-of-view adding bits of my own version of humor and analysis to the conversation. I’m use to opposition and often thrive on it depending on the topic, but what I received from this guy was much different. This one was beyond just disagreeing with me, but it was an insult with a devilish smile on it. I just didn’t want to respond how I originally wanted. I’m sure he’ll never read it, but I hope he does and maybe he’ll understand where I’m coming from. If not I will allow his comments to be viewed by everyone and open it up for public discussion. 🙂

      Anyway, thanks once again.

  2. Tim,

    Well done! Amen!

    The exhibit Race: Are we that different? is still on my mind two weeks later … and that’s good …. and it made your post more meaningful too me.

    I don’t consider myself a racist, but one of the things that I’ve pondered ever since is what are the little things that I do or have done that points to racism. That’s tough & deep.

    Unfortunately, racism is something we humans created and put on ourselves ,, sad to say … and it’s not just white on black, or native American on Asian because it’s a two-way street with plenty of people at fault.

    Again, well done … and I hope all my words came out right.

    1. Thanks Frank,

      Well I don’t consider your to be a racist, because you’ve given no indication to be one. We’ve all said, thought or did something that was insensitive, but we learn quickly from our mistakes. I agree with you absolutely 100%. Racism is something we as humans created.

      I’ve received some pretty “interesting” comments on here in the past that were very negative, but this one just didn’t deserve to be published or perpetuated. I do think he deserved a proper response.

      Thanks for reading and please feel free to express your thoughts, ideas and suggestions anytime. You don’t have to agree with me to comment.


  3. I happen to like your blog a lot. I also don’t misunderstand what I’ve read. Perhaps people that misunderstand things here and there should accept that they need to brush up on a few things. Not only do I like your blog, I’ve had one of my British buddies tell me that he read something on your blog that was very informative/educational and he was glad you wrote about it. (I’m sorry, I forgot to mention it). So, you’re even gathering a few fans over here. He, like others, don’t make comments but they do read your blog. He (they) don’t write comments on my blog either.

    The bigger picture is that you have a really good blog. The nay sayers are just so you can know that even perfection isn’t perfect. Keep up the good work. Your blog fan, SteadyCat.

    1. Thanks.

      I’m going to start writing about more things from outside of this box called America soon anyway. Tell your friends I would love for them to comment. I normally don’t bite.

      I appreciate the kind words, especially from an award winning writer like yourself. I want to be like you when I grow up. 🙂

  4. “They said that I can’t change the world and I’m foolish for thinking that I can change a person with inspiring words”.

    Don’t you feel sorry for these self-loathing types? They figure you can’t inspire because they cannot be inspired. I normally refer to such a person as a “zero”.
    They are the complacent and apathetic among us. Content with the status quo and all the evils that go along with it.

    These people are the reason things are as bad as they are now because they haven’t the courage to take a stand against injustice.

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