What we witnessed yesterday in our Nation’s capital, on the steps of the Capitol Building, and in the storming of our seat of democracy was shameful, anti-values and anti-American. It was the result of unbridled anger and resentment, stoked by the fires of demagogy. It is proof that anger unleashed without a constructive purpose that is guided by values — among them respect, kindness and truth — goes nowhere except to incite violence and, then, more anger.
We must break this vicious cycle in our country and get back to mutual respect and peaceful — and civil — dialogue. In this paradigm, everyone is of value; everyone is important; everyone plays a role. We must listen to each other, and we must uphold truth, democracy and decency. If we hold these values as the glue that binds us, we can re-unite our nation and learn from each other.
Kindness can do this. It is the overriding value that has no opposite, except to be mean. No one wants that. One year ago, we published an anonymous poem. We believe that this poem is timely for today. Kindness will not immediately turn the tide. But it will infuse our culture with a value that we all can rally around and that we all intrinsically understand; because, at the end of the day, that is what we all want. So let’s practice the value of kindness, spread this in our communities, teach this to our children, and watch what happens. Let’s begin this process now!
“As the world fights to figure everything out,
I’ll be holding doors for strangers,
Letting people cut in front of me in traffic,
Saying ‘Good Morning,’
Keeping babies entertained in grocery lines,
Stopping to talk to someone who is lonely,
Being patient with sales clerks,
Smiling at a passerby.
I will be kind to a stranger,
Give grace to friends who are having a bad day,
Be forgiving of myself and others.
Why? Because I will not stand idly by and
live in a world where love is invisible.
Be the Change. Just Be Kind.”
CEO and President