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  • Mindy McCarthy

What happened to RESPECT?

It is hard to put into words my thoughts on the current state of our nation. Multiple black males have been murdered senselessly recently leading to riots and violence all over our country.

While I cannot speak to being anything other than a white female, all of the events have led me to ponder where the lack of respect came from across our nation.

People are having their rights disrespected and stripped away. Individuals are no longer treated as unique individuals but part of a stereotype aimed at a larger group (and I say that for black men and police officers).

Citizen’s right to protest peacefully has been in question for years with one of the biggest headline examples being Colin Kaepernick kneeling for the national anthem or having teams lock arms to show solidarity. People are requesting peaceful protests, but the truth is this has always been a problem if someone was protesting something that they did not agree with.

I feel that the media also has a lack of respect for the American citizens constantly finding negative stories that divide people. Blacks and whites are a great example as well as other click-baiting headlines like how certain athletes supposedly don't agree with their coaches or whatever way they may want to twist words around. I have seen plenty of stories firsthand and from my own friends who have posted videos about communities coming together, but you aren’t going to see that in the mainstream media.

I have also seen a lack of respect in sports, particularly youth sports. Some parents begin disrespecting their son or daughter’s coaches or shout profanities at referees. Some coaches do not respect players as individuals with their own strengths that can be contributed to their teams. Some players do not respect each other starting scruffles on the court or field of play.

Other people’s properties are not being respected either. Looting has led business owners who were finally able to open their doors again after Covid-19 losing everything they had saved up. Police cars are being burned as a part of these riots, and some individual citizens’ cars are being damaged, too.

My point of all this is to ask how can we show respect to one another? How can you treat each person as a true individual rather than putting them into a category? How can you show someone you respect their opinion even when you may not agree with it?

Most of us individuals may feel helpless in this situation, but I highly disagree. We can show one another that we love and respect each other. We can constantly show kindness to people even if they are different from us or have different opinions. We can spread positivity to all people, especially those who are feeling that they do not matter.

We are all human. Do your part. Be kind. Listen to understand, not reply.

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