IT STARTS AT HOME, FOLKS.
As adults, we teach our kids to walk, talk, read and write. We also teach our kids right from wrong (in most cases) and we teach them what is acceptable in behaviour, when to speak up and when to be respectfully quiet.
Well, that’s what I teach my kids.
It doesn’t always go to plan, I’ll admit. Unfortunately, inheriting traits like being stubborn and short-tempered, and only having so many hours in a day is factored into this equation and sometimes there are nuclear reactions with vein-pulsing-in-my-forehead melt-downs.
But all in all, we do okay.
I’m not proclaiming to be an inductee of the Mother of the Year award (because I have two kids who would do themselves an injury from laughing so hard if I did) but there’s something I also teach my kids… and that’s tolerance.
Imma let you all in on a little secret.
Hate or intolerance of any kind is not inherited.
It is taught.
I’m sure psychiatrists call it something technical, like ‘environmental behavioural science’ but whatever… To me, it’s just plain old monkey see, monkey do.
Kids hate because they’re taught to hate. They’re taught somewhere along the way, that it’s okay, that what they do, what they are, is better than someone else. And then those kids grow up to become teens who hate, who inevitably become adults, who hate.
And it’s not just homophobia. It’s not just racism. It’s not just religious discrimination.
It’s all forms of intolerance.
Thinking someone is stupid, or inferior to you, because of the books they read, the TV shows they like, the clothes they wear, are all forms of intolerance.
So next time someone in your house says someone is ‘stupid’ or ‘lame’ or whatever, for supporting a different football team, or liking a certain band or singer or driving a certain kind of car, stop and think…
What exactly are you condoning?
Intolerance is intolerance, no matter what it’s disguised as.
And none of it’s acceptable.
If kids think it’s okay to hate someone because of the football team they support, or the clothes they wear, then they’re learning that it’s okay to hate someone for any other reason.
And it needs to stop. It needs to stop with our kids, so they can teach their kids, and the cycle of hate stops.
I’ll leave you with something Nelson Mandela once said…
So, let’s spread the word on Homophobia and Transphobia. The m/m community is a fabulous place to start.
May 17th – 27th is when we blog hop to celebrate tolerance and share experiences.
Thank you for dropping by, and as a show of appreciation, I’d like to offer a copy each of Blind Faith and Through These Eyes to one lucky person who comments on my blog post. To enter, follow my blog if you’re not already, leave a smiley face in the comments and then hop along to another blog and read what that author has to say. I’ll draw a random winner on the 27th.
The link to the Blog Hop page is http://hopagainsthomophobia.blogspot.com/