Yesterday I was discouraged. I read an anxiety-filled post on Facebook that told me I’d better start praying that a certain party would win, or we would all be in huge trouble. The leader of this party was a saint, while the leaders of the other parties would destroy our country. The same day I read statistics to prove that statistics one party was using were lies. I read cheery thanksgiving messages telling me how blessed I was to live in North America (true), and read a post by Richard Gere who posed as a homeless man on the streets of New York – perhaps his best role ever! – where everybody but one person passed him by. I was filled with righteous indignation ... until I recalled that the day before I myself had crossed the street to avoid an unsavory character begging on a street corner.
“The contemporary world, with its open wounds which affect so many of our brothers and sisters, demands that we confront every form of polarization which would divide it into two camps. We know that in the attempt to be freed of the enemy without, we can be tempted to feed the enemy within. To imitate the hatred and violence of tyrants and murderers [and ordinary people like you and me] is the best way to take their place.” (From a recent address by Pope Francis to the United States Congress)
(Gere's story appeared on my Facebook page under the banner of The Humans of New York.)