Monday, November 24, 2014

sitting in judgement

I used to find it easy to judge people. By judge, I mean I would weigh their worth. Sum them up with a word. Asshole. Idiot. Jerk. Crook. Thief. Thug. As I practice more, I find I can do this less.

This doesn't mean I don't see the same behavior I saw before. I do. I know when someone is cheating me and I get angry about it just like anyone else. I'm not a fucking saint. I just mean that I can't DISMISS someone for it. I end up wondering what its like to be them, what happened to them that makes them the way they are. I start to see how it could happen that they ended up that way.

I can get angry when someone is an asshat. I just can't STAY angry.

Yesterday, Marion Barry died. He was the truly shitty mayor of Washington, DC. 4 TIMES. He is famous for his "the bitch set me up" line, uttered when he was caught with both crack and a woman not his wife, in a hotel room. He was a crook, a dishonest politician, a philanderer, a drug addict. But he was also reputedly a loyal friend. He worked his way up, from a boy picking cotton to a man with a masters degree in chemistry, from a tiny town in the South, to a civil rights activist, to mayor of a large city. No one is all bad, or all good.

I said as much in a FB posting and was astounded at the angry reaction. Because he was a bad man, who abused his power, most folks thought he should be written off. He was a crooked politician, and that was the sum of it.

I used to feel the same way. Sometimes I wonder if it's a bad thing that I don't anymore.

1 comment:

radiantlisa said...

You said it - no one is ever one thing. And honestly, most of the bad in the world comes from seeing things narrowly, not seeing the whole picture, not even being willing to admit there is more to the picture than what we want to see.

So, no, not a bad thing. A compassionate thing.