Re: Some of us do nothing as the world burns, Sept. 9 column.
There was a time I felt exactly like you. And then I didn’t. Hypocrisy is a pet theme of mine and I write about it whenever a good steam threatens to blow me up. Social injustice is another favourite rant.
Yet I have not volunteered, raised funds or offered a bed to a Syrian refugee. And I’m pretty sure my reasons are better than yours are.
I am no Katie Morosky, marching outside the walls of my cushioned reality. I felt like a fraud. “All talk and no action! Put your money where your mouth is!” I yelled at the mirror in my bathroom.
And then one day, after I whipped myself into a whimpering mass of quivering guilt, I realized I am and always have been contributing to the cause. Writing about it is not doing nothing… talking about it is not doing nothing… offering a smile and an open heart to every Muslim I see is not doing nothing.
“From each according to his ability” is a Karl Marx classic. Writing is what I do best. Some might say talking. And while it’s not an excuse to limit myself, it’s nothing to sneeze at, either.
If one new idea is considered, or one person is changed by something that I wrote, it is enough.
OK, that’s a lie. It’s never enough! But it does keep me fighting.
Somebody once said that the written word is one of the most persuasive tools ever invented by humankind. As a writer and a talker, my contributions are not measurable. It doesn’t mean they don’t exist.
Cruelty has always been part of this earth experience. There is a reason for that. It gives us something to overcome – to reach beyond – and to measure ourselves against. Like nothing else it can light the fire within and bring forth the best in us.
Every loving thought or action – every humble self-examination, such as yours – influences universal consciousness and brings us closer to a more inclusive society.
Can I do more? Can we do more? Always! If we want to make this world a better place, we must always strive for more. But there are countless ways to do it, none of them greater or lesser than another.
Don’t sell yourself short as writer and editor of an award-winning newspaper with social consciousness at its heart. That is no accident. Your column hit home, and it’s not the first time Peace Arch News has moved me to greater thought and greater kindness. That’s how the world changes – one mind at a time, one heart at a time.
Now you’ll have to excuse me; I have a cheque to write.
Maureen Kerr, Surrey