by Julian Herring
The news of yesterday and today has been dominated by the events in Charlottesville, Virginia. Shame on the White Nationalists that think they are making America great again with their xenophobia, racism, isolationism, sectarianism, and whatever -ism they are propagating. And shame on Fox News, CNN, MSBNC and all others that continually propagate fear, hatred, and division in an effort to sell more advertising…
I have serious doubts about whether this protest or any like it, or the news media, or even our current political system will make America great, including our Commander-in-Chief (who popularized the concept of great-making). I’m weary and cynical.
Occasionally though, I get a glimpse of something that gives me hope. And the glimpse is always the exact opposite of the hate fomented by those in Charlottesville this weekend, the exact opposite of the sensationalism of the media, and the exact opposite of the ineffectiveness of our politicians. Here’s the glimpse.
A homeless white man walked into a Taco Cabana in San Antonio, Texas during the lunch hour today. He slinked in the side door with his backpack and Raising Cane cup and sat down near the restroom, head down, trying to avoid attention. It was very obvious that the August heat was wearing him down. At the right moment, he went to the drink fountain and filled his Raising Cane cup with ice and sweet tea. The sweet relief was obvious. Thank goodness the Taco Cabana staff and customers allowed him to be. This was opposite of the profit-driven, customer-comfort norm.
As he enjoyed his tea, a lady of another race from the other side of the restaurant was catching the same glimpse I was. She quietly went to the counter and ordered a meal, no fanfare, no sensationalism. The cashier took her order and money and gave her a number for the table. The lady of another race gave the table number to her husband, also of another race. He took the number to the homeless white guy’s table, placed it, and left. No fanfare, no sensationalism. A good deed, unannounced. The weary and worn countenance of the homeless white guy (hereinafter called Curtis) lit up. Grace in the form of Taco Cabana number, a pledge of a meal to come!
I wanted to pump my fist in the air and shout, “Hell, yeah!!!” because this is good and this is more normal than the protests, riots, and those who profit by the perpetuation and propagation of fear, and those (politicians) that promise to deliver us from the same fear.
Here’s my point and challenge – there is much good going on out in the real world, it just doesn’t get much coverage. Be encouraged. And get in on the action of love, because this is the opposite and this is what matters.