We all have deeply held beliefs we are passionate about. I have many. They don’t always line up with each other, but they make sense to me and that’s what counts.
But every once in a while, hearing those beliefs expressed makes you feel like an ass.
Treating each other well is one of my fundamental tenets. It’s why I support equality, civil rights and good manners. It’s why I haven’t let my son join Boy Scouts. I object to their treatment of homosexuals. I recognize they have every right to enforce that policy. They are a private organization with a religious base. I also have a right not to support them. Which I exercise. Vocally.
Enter the asshole.
Today, as I waited for my kids to get out of school, a young man was wearing an Eagle Scout uniform and being harangued by a mother (not his own, obviously) about the policies of Boy Scouts. This poor kid was near tears as the grown woman continued to shout at him. So I calmly intervened. (Lie. I yelled.)
“How would you react if this young man were being harassed for being gay?” I turn to the kid, “I’m not saying you’re gay or anything.”
She looked at me, blankly.
“He is not responsible for Boy Scouts. He’s a kid. It’s not his fault. Leave him alone.” I stomped off to wait for my kids. She left. So did the kid.
And fuming, I heard myself delivering that same rant. Multiple times. Because the policy pisses me off.
But it isn’t the kids fault. So all those times I refused to buy popcorn? All the times I ranted and raved, once in front of a woman I didn’t know had a son in Scouts? I was just as horrible as that lady.
I am so ashamed. SO ASHAMED! I could have (and will in the future) make a cash donation to the troop. It benefits the boys directly and isn’t funneled through the organization. Perfect compromise. I will also quit hollering about a policy I find offensive. Unless I come face to face with an actual representative of the national organization. Then I reserve the right to go completely mental on his ass.
I know several great parents whom I admire and respect that have sons involved in Scouting. Their sons are great kids. And they truly enjoy it. So who am I to crap all over that experience? I come back to a post I put on Facebook that probably offended some people. ( I know, you’re shocked.)
“Political views are like genitalia. Everyone knows you have them, but only a select few are interested in seeing them.”
I need to shut the hell up, lest I become what I hate.