Shaken Not Stirred

Saturday, April 30, 2005

Is There A Difference In Differences?

I was searching for different stories to read, different news stories other than sensational court cases involving mega-stars, stories about war ridden countries or passionately committed crimes. Under the most recommended news stories in Yahoo, I found a peculiar one. At first it seemed like a book burning issue (one that interests me because to me, reading is fundamental). A man was apparently arrested because of his discomfort with the subject of a book contained in the school's library. The book did not feature cuss words, hatred, or illicitly written sexual content. The book's controversial topic is social diversity.

The book titled, "Who's In the Family", depicts the different types of families that make up today's community. The man was concerned because the book showed a family made up of two fathers. Shocking? I think not. Let's see, we laughed at "Full House"--which contained three dads. We also liked (or somebody liked, I've only seen reruns) a house with two moms--Kate and Allie. Movie blockbusters and still sometimes seen on late night cable--"Three Men and a Baby". So why is it so bad that the featured family is the pit of the hype? Because they are a gay family.

I personally feel that if children learn about these differences earlier in life, they are better apt to deal with them. Children are a lot more observant than we give them credit for. And they can also be a little more cruel about differences among their peers. The very color of another child's mittens or sneakers can cause mocking outbursts and sing-song teasing. But if we can show them that having two dads in the same household is common-place (more common than some would like to believe), then they wouldn't use this to tease one another. Every child has a different household, the most important aspect of that household should be love--and with that comes respect and support. The child will grow up more secure about themself and less apt to notice the differences, whether in themself or another child.

I can sympathize somewhat with the father. He didn't want his child to learn about something some controversial at such an early age. But having two dads wouldn't be so controversial if we didn't make it that way. Acceptance of changes and differences will lessen a person's uneasiness. Last night, Whoopi Goldberg said in a stand-up routine that we can either accept change on our knees or else do it standing-up. She's completely correct. Why should we stay on our knees, if we do, we might get trampled by the herd running toward the change. If we stand-up, at least we can see what's really going on. And we don't have to look at or smell anyone's asses in that position. (okay I don't really know if that statement made any sense, but I had pictured in my head someone who resisted change by staying on their knees being surrounded by a bunch of asses). I'm going to stop, before my point gets lost in a sea of nonsense.

Have a good weekend.


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