The Responsible & Those Irresponsible

9 01 2011

Tragedy is common. Wars rage and subside, then rage again. Individuals align themselves with groups and battle against other individuals in another group. Disagreements escalate among people in one culture or another every day, sometimes resulting in not just psychological but also physical violence. It happens all the time.

Yet our worlds keep turning – as they should. A shooting in Mattapan, MA doesn’t prevent a street in Moss Point, MS from reopening after its own shooting. One of humanity’s greatest strengths is that we can endure more than we can imagine. However, like all kinds of strength, our ability to endure tragic circumstance improves only with practice.

It is easier to simply react. Hell, it’s more fun. To simply embrace one’s first reaction and cease contemplation soon after is a luxury reserved for those with very little adult responsibility. Much like eating dessert for breakfast, the consequence quickly outweighs it’s novelty.

As we learn more about Friday’s assassination attempt on Congresswoman Giffords in Arizona, and as we hear various theories on why it happened, who was killed, who was injured and who is responsible, it’s important to think four moves ahead. Yes, Sarah Palin is among those guilty of the incendiary remarks that encourage physical violence against those with whom she disagrees. Yes, these people should be ashamed and embarrassed by their past actions. Now, what are you going to do about it? Hit someone? Shoot someone? Use your car to run over someone with whom you philosophically disagree about healthcare, reproductive rights, gay marriage and a myriad of other crucial ideas?

Go home. Sit down. Have a cup of something warm, caffeine free, and non-alcoholic. Remember that each of us has the power to just say no to that way of life. Because they’re out there – those who choose to take the easy path, the irresponsible path, as we endure the violence they embrace.


Proposition 8 Defeats California

7 11 2008

I couldn’t have said it better myself:

“Senators Boxer and Feinstein, the mayors of San Diego, Los Angeles, and San Francisco, the state’s major editorial pages, Pacific Gas and Electric, tech titans Google and Apple — all opposed Proposition 8. Their opposition was rooted in the American ideal of liberty and justice for all, but it made practical sense, too. Call it a slow brain drain (brain leak?), call it a competitive disadvantage in recruitment, call it what you want. At the end of the day, bigotry is not just morally repugnant — it’s also bad business.”

The number one reason to be inclusive in your business is to avoid driving away some of the best talent with discriminatory policies. It’s just bad business.