Once every week or so, wherever I have coffee or lunch, I'll buy a $5 or maybe $10 gift card.
I'll keep it in my pocket for the next day because that's when I usually see someone sleeping on a bench or curb with no shoes.
Make eye contact and they'll ask for help. If you have "help," give it.
I've always been torn to share stories like this but I've done it my entire life. I used to come downtown and get cash just for this reason and keep bills in every pocket. I don't have much money so it was usually $2-$3 or so but over the course of an evening, it could be $10-$20.
I've always given away anything extra I've had. Time, money, energy... If I have it, I'll give it away.
I hope you do the same.
(Btw, gift cards over $$ because they cant buy cigarettes or beer with a gift card to a smoothy shop. Someone said "Arent you being a dick by not buying them what they want?" My answer was "tough shit. I'll help make you better, not worse.")
My daughter calls me, leaves a VM, sounds pretty urgent.
Now, urgent to my 12 year old could easily mean she needs a ride to sleep over in 6 weeks, so I'm not panicked or worked up. Yet.
I call and she has a story for me.
"Dad, I need to talk to you about something. I have a friend, she's gay. Today at school, someone left a note and it said really bad things."
Like what? Can you say it?
"It said a lot of bad words like B and stuff, and said God hates you. What should we do? My friend is really shy and scared and doesn't want to tell the teacher. She's afraid she'll get in trouble or she'll get more notes."
Pause the story. I think I've always been pretty sensitive to bullying and such, plus having two girls and training those Eastside girls all those years, I can see the math in this really fast. A young girl afraid to do the right thing, in fear of retaliation... this can lead to major, major issues down the line.
I ask "What do you want to do? What do you think you should do?"
She says "I think we should stick up for her, tell the teacher and principal."
I agree and then tell her to call me if needed, "I will visit the school to talk to the principal."
(Bet your ass, I'll be calling this afternoon).
(This is the part where I start pounding away with my stumpy pointer fingers and lets go straight for the fastball)
"God hates you."
I don't know what makes this more sad.
A) The fact that there's a little piece of shit kid out there writing things like that.
B) This little hillbilly has no future because their parents are backwards ass rednecks and unless receives proper "reprogramming," soon, will probably spread their horrible genes at some point and create more backwards ass rednecks (because "rednecks," and their thoughts are a disease)
C) My daughter, at 12, has to deal with worthless losers like this.
Do some religions exist that preach this?
If you belong to one and reading this, fuck you and delete my number. If you think there is a debate here... that would be so fun for me. I take back the "delete my number," part, please call to debate.
Ever see that dumbass deer sticking his skinny face in the river, thinking its all good and then the croc appears and takes it all away? That's exactly how this debate would go (hint: you're the deer).
Irony is, a couple years ago, I didn't really have much faith in the future or humans. Is that a weird way of wording it?
Try this, step back and watch a few humans like you're not one. Watch the news. Watch people interact in large crowds. Do they look advanced or civilized? You watched the debate, this is our best and brightest? Oh no? Then where are they hiding?
But I've seen some light recently. A nice batch of young guys coming along that may be able to keep this thing moving fwd... we'll see.
QB for the 49ers protests the National Anthem to shine brighter light on a major issue.
Some of you and some media respond with "Look at this guy! the system that created him, he's now blasting! If not for the system, he'd still be...." and on and on.
Or it was "Look at this millionaire protesting vets and disrespecting the country!"
Things like that. I've read countless posts/tweets and heard news bashing him for it.
Obviously, this is very short sighted, and white vision.
Obviously, this a race issue and when a guy like Kaepernick stands up... wait a sec... black athletes dont stand up anymore.
And why not?
Lets ask MJ. "Mj, why dont black athletes protest social/racial injustices anymore?"
MJ would say "Want to see my Nike check?"
Muhammad Ali is dead and that was one more monstrous nail in the coffin I've been ranting against for a couple years.
Guys with balls are dying and it's becoming a soft, bullshit society.
Keapernick isn't protesting against the National Anthem, he's protesting against police brutality and the number of shootings by police officers against black people. The kneeling on that song is a tool to spark conversation. That's it.
I see the kneeling and I see it as the light needed to get it going and more people should be having that conversation, not the "F Kaepernick," conversation.
Think. Be fair and logical. Have empathy and imagination. Im not not black, I'm white, so I cant relate, right? But I can certainly imagine what it would be like to be in a particular spot and treated a particular way because of how I look and its bullshit.
Would you want your daughters, wife, brother, parents treated harshly because of anything along the lines of prejudice or racism?
Then why would you allow it to someone else?
We're just advanced animals