I hate hate.
I don't believe in hating. But I think it's okay to hate hate.
Unfortunately we see it everywhere. We saw it Monday at the Boston Marathon. We see it in other countries. We see it in our neighborhoods. We see it at our play dates. We see it in our schools. Hate manifests itself in ugly ways.
I was not the coolest kid growing up. And while I may not have been bullied mercilessly, I was certainly picked on. Harrassed. Because I dressed a certain way, liked certain things. And it had a profound effect on my self-esteem and the way I thought about myself.
Bullying is not for adults, friends. No. We are seeing it in younger and younger kids. Kids who take out their own hurt on others. With Chica starting Kindergarten in the Fall (::hold me::) I am all the more aware of what she will face during her school years. That she will understand hurt, embarrassment, belittlement - at the mercy of her peers.
What I hate most about hate? It is an equal opportunity employer. (Ironic, right?) Think about it: It touches race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or the color shoes you are wearing that day. No aspect of humanity is safe.
The GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network) is the leading national education organization focused on ensuring safe schools for all students. Their 2009 National School Climate Survey found that nearly 9 out of 10 LGBT students report verbal, sexual or physical harassment at school and more than 30% report missing at least a day of school in the past month out of fear for their personal safety.
This is an outrage.
Now, I detest bullying of every kind. But I'm becoming more and more concerned at the hurt and violence being displayed toward the LGBT community. Because here's the deal, folks: it doesn't matter if you agree with homosexuality. Or different races. Or different religions. Or what color my shoes are today.
Hate is hate.
And it's wrong.
We need to love our fellow man (and woman).
Hate is not the answer.
This Friday, April 19th, I am going to participate in the GLSEN Day of Silence. I'm going to sign the pledge. I'm going to let it manifest itself on the CSHM Facebook page.
And I am asking you to join me.
Starting Friday morning, I will not be having our normal Chat Day. I won't be posting smart status updates (although they are rather witty, no?) or sharing intriguing posts. Instead, I'm going to share pictures.
Here is where you will get involved.
In the same fashion as our I'm Mom Enough response to last May's Time Magazine cover, I'm asking you to take out a blank sheet of paper. On that piece of paper, I'm going to ask you to write a message of love using the hashtag #DayOfSilence. Need some ideas? Here are a few:
Hate is not the answer.
Love > Hate.
I accept and love all people.
Write your own creative message as to why you will NOT stay silent any longer around anti-LGBT bullying and harassment. Share why this message is close to YOUR heart. Make sure to use the hashtag #DayOfSilence.
If you aren't comfortable making that statement, share your message about why you will not longer stay silent about HATE and BULLYING.