How responsible are we for bettering our lives and supporting our communities? A couple of nights ago I was talking to a gay friend of mine who got annoyed when I made a comment to the affect of, “I would watch certain T.V. shows if there were more ‘gay’ characters.” After a long argument about this it all boiled down to that they didn’t care about the discrimination shown toward the LGBT community and that they were happy with their life and that was satisfying enough. I can admit getting pretty upset about this and not clearly understanding why this person would not care about such an important issue in our society. I was chatting with a member of the LGBT community last night who said that he wasn’t involved with LGBT issues, he cared about them, but wasn’t involved in any way and said that he gets upset when “active” people chastise him for not being involved. And this brings me to my question about our responsibility.
I can’t say that I’m constantly involved in LGBT activities but I have given a lot of my time and certainly a lot of money to different organizations. I voice my opposition to right wing fanatics and show appreciation to the little organizations that indeed do big things. Why? Because if I don’t, who will? If Dr. King and Rosa Parks said that they didn’t care, how far would we be today? Time is our most valuable asset and if you don’t have the time to support these types of organizations then that’s OK but please don’t sit around and “not care” about the discrimination that you yourself are experiencing either directly or indirectly.
What’s our responsibility? Ideally, our responsibility is to make some type of -positive- impact on our personal communities. Essentially, we are what we do. That’s how our life will be determined and we’re living out the first line of our obituary. If you don’t want to look at your actions on that level then look at it this way, what you do will affect someone else. If we aren’t concerned with the hate in this world then lets take care of the next generation. Harvey Fierstein, an out gay comedian and actor, said he used to get upset when he saw that he paid taxes for public schools when he had no children. After some consideration he thought that the children is our next generation and it is our responsibility to take care of them. If hate doesn’t mean something to you and you have the ability to make an impact why not do it for someone else; someone once said “what hurts my brother, hurts me”.
At birth we inherit the responsibility to somehow make a positive impact on the lives of those around us. This doesn’t really have to be on a major scale. When I was younger I had a daily goal to make at least one person smile that day and after awhile that became something I did without any effort. Your minor effort can be a major to someone else, but we accomplish nothing having an “I don’t care attitude”. If your attitude is that way because you feel insignificant to the major problem that’s affecting you, remember, “success is only accessible by stairs, there’s no elevator”