On the other hand however when people are up to no good at all they exhibit their hatred, bad manners, disdain, ignorance and crudity for everyone to see, whether they want to see it or not. Quiet it ain't. There may be a lesson or two in that, should we search for it.
A gentleman these days who quietly holds a shop door open for a random female is likely to get a loud mouthful of invective that the whole shop hears. You must have noticed that, surely.
Looks alone can be deceptive though.
You might also have noticed some who at first glance might pass for mild-mannered gentlemen but something - a T-shirt perhaps, gives them away.
So it was that two chaps were in yesterday that gave clear examples. Now it is not often that worldly-famous folk just wander in but one such who keeps quiet most of the time was sitting in the corner supping a pint. Odd background it transpired. I won't say who he is until later. But he showed us a fine example of what a kind heart can do to change a person's life while quite unnoticed by the crowd.
I've never really told anyone about this.
I was walking and stopped in for lunch at a little cafe. From my window I saw a young teenage girl out in the cold, squatted down by the side of the road, holding a small bundle in her arms. She was panhandling, people were mostly walking by ignoring her. She just looked broken.I finished up my meal and went outside, went through my wallet and thought I'd give her $5 for some food. I got up to her and she was sobbing, she looked like she was 14-15. And that bundle in her arms was a baby wrapped up.
I felt like I just got punched in the chest. She looked up putting on a game face and asked for any change, I asked her if she'd like some lunch. Right next door was a small quick-Trip type grocery store, I got a can of formula for the baby (very young, maybe 2-3 months), and took her back to the cafe though I'd just eaten. She was very thankful, got a burger and just inhaled it. Got her some pie and ice cream.
She opened up and we talked. She was 15, got pregnant, parents were angry and she was fighting with them. She ran away. She had been gone almost 1 full year.
I asked her if she'd like to go home and she got silent. I coaxed her, she said her parents wouldn't want her back. I coaxed further, she admitted she stole 5k in cash from her Dad.
Turns out 5k doesn't last long at all and the streets are tough on a 15 year old. Very tough. She did want to go back, but she was afraid no one wanted her back after what she did.We talked more, I wanted her to use my phone to call home but she wouldn't. I told her I'd call and see if her folks wanted to talk to her, she hesitated and gave bad excuses but eventually agreed.
She dialed the number and I took the phone, her Mom picked up and I said hello. Awkwardly introduced myself and said her daughter would like to speak to her. Silence, and I heard crying. Gave the phone to the girl and she was just quiet listening to her Mom cry, and then said hello. And she cried. They talked, she gave the phone back to me, I talked to her Mom some more.I drove her down to the bus station and bought her a bus ticket home. Gave her $100 cash for incidentals, and some formula, diapers, wipes, snacks for the road.Got to the bus, and she just cried saying thank you over and over. I gave her a kiss on the forehead and a hug, kissed her baby, and she got on the bus.
Now ask yourself: what would you have done? Walk out of the cafe and walk on? I can put $10 bucks on the table to say most people would. Have a think of what sort of a person would do as he did.
I get a Christmas card every year from her. She's 21 now and in college. I've never really told anyone about this. I just feel good knowing I did something good in this world. Be the change you wish to see in the world.
Again I would put the $10 bucks to say it would be ordinary people, who weren't up themselves. People who attend to what is around them and attend to their personal duty to do something when something needs to be done. Something even quite small. Something private that will not attract TV cameras and interviewers.
Compare that with the scenes we see on our TV screens alsmost daily. Lucas Rosas took up my point.
The Hate-filled Haters of HatredI remember seeing a motherly looking lady of advanced middle years, being beaten to the ground in Federation Square [Melbourne] just over a year ago, by a jeering mob, for the crime of waving an Australian flag.I remember watching a cheering throng, urged on by faculty and student union officials at La Trobe University, laughing and clapping as Marxist activists repeatedly kicked a be-suited dummy of John Howard in-between its legs, before hanging it by a noose.
I remember watching a small, weekday leftist demonstration of a few dozen well fed activists, burning an effigy of Tony Abbott in central Melbourne, one week after the election in 2013.These same people, who burned an image of a man who hadn’t even had the opportunity to yet pass any legislation, had spent the previous three years complaining endlessly about the apparent “hatred” that the poor, sainted martyr Julia Gillard had been forced to endure.After all, didn’t someone print a rude menu about her once? And hold up a sign calling her a witch? And didn’t that notorious sexist Abbott once look at his watch while she was speaking?How could that possibly compare to “F— Abbott” T-Shirts being promoted by Fairfax? Decapitated likenesses on stage? Facebook pages promoting death threats being created at Geelong Trades Hall? Countless taxpayer subsidised banners in the street with Mr Abbott being hanged, burned to death and otherwise murdered?This is not to point out the hypocrisy of the left; any reader of XYZ will already know just how blind the hate-filled haters of hatred are to their own deficiencies.
Is it just 'left and right'? Personally I see the left as a symptom of hatred. The left is an exhibition of hatred. The left mobs constantly decry the 'Right Wing Nazis' seemingly ignorant of the fact that the Nazis were left-wing. Socialists. Its in the name. Duh !
This is to question why Abbott in particular, and rightist figures in general, do so much to try to please people who base their entire identity on wanting anyone who disagrees with them humiliated, bleeding in the street, or dead?Why did Abbott try so hard not to seem sexist, when it was clear for years before he became Prime Minister, that these ideologues would never allow him to escape this noose they had fashioned for him in a thousand classrooms, and with thousands more lines of print?Why does the right allow the left to set the narrative?
Dancing to whatever tune they please, writhing on our belly in the dirt before these self appointed arbiters of modern morality, to escape being called racist, sexist, or homophobic?Regardless of the outcome of the US Presidential election, the rise of Trump has revealed that the imagined powers of our tax-fed cultural elites are mostly empty words. Illusions and paper tigers with only as much clout as we allow them to have.The truth is, without our tax dollars, the high-and-mighty, self-righteous, sanctimonious sneerers would have no power at all.No talking heads setting the narrative, no academics pontificating from on high, no black-clad thugs in the streets beating those who dare dissent.
So why isn’t defunding these leeches the main mission of all right-of-centre politicians and activists?
Is it? This is where the noticing comes in.
Why did the Howard government spend its 2007 political capital on easily reversed Industrial Relations laws, while leaving the citadels of the Culture War untouched, and in some cases even buttressed?Part of it is the fact that for so many conservatives and others to the right, it’s hard to see just how full of hate those on the other side are.
We can perceive the fanaticism of an Islamic State Jihadist, but fail to see the same burning zeal, fevered brain and eyes fixed on a future-imagined paradise in the people all around us, our neighbours, our workmates, even the nice middle aged woman teaching our five year old at the local public school.But these same people hate you so much that if you say the wrong thing, they will happily accept, and even work towards you losing your job, and being ostracised from society.They will cheer as a privileged child clad in a mask and hood kicks you in the face, for the crime of thinking a sufficiently politically incorrect thing and saying so in public. Some will even curse and spit on the police for trying to protect you.These people are all around us, some too scared or dull of thinking to do anything other than follow the herd, many others so corrupted by those who taught them and the culture that surrounds them, to be beyond any possible argument, logic, or reason.They exist only because of the parasite establishment that feeds off the productive members in our society to sustain itself. An establishment that nourishes and protects its members by instilling in them an almost Gnostic hatred for everything that currently exists, and a love of an impossible paradise forever out of reach.These people are far more deadly to our society than any Islamist; they are the gangrenous limb that kills the body.
Kindness is not taught in our schools. The 'anti-bullying' lessons children get are fixated on pornography and mental illness.
Muslim extremists, for all their multitude of faults, at least have the decency to declare themselves the enemies of our society.Until the many scattered, divided, and often disenchanted tribes to the right of the Australian political landscape find some party, movement or force to coalesce around, these hate-filled haters of hatred will continue with their mission to bully, cow, and intimidate all in our society to bend to their will.It’s time to stop crawling for praise from people who hate us, time to stop being the “nice” right-winger who is sufficiently left-wing to get invites to be the baited bear on a stacked ABC panel, or the token dissident at an inner-city dinner party.It’s time to realise just how much these people hate you and everyone like you with every fibre of their being.It’s time to start fighting back.
Not to try to eradicate them but make them normal !
While our Institutions are poisoned and intent on poisoning the hearts and minds of the public, we must rely on Individuals to carry the flames of Love and kindness.
Individuals like the gentleman we mentioned earlier. The chap who said of himself.. "I'm sorry my existence is not very noble or sublime."
You would pass him in the street and not recognise him.
Keanu Reeves. He is a chap. An actor. A Canadian born in Lebanon. I quite like him despite his erratic life. Perhaps because of it. He is a thoughtful man, and again, perhaps that is what marks a kind person. He has the makings of a Hero. You do not hear much of him. He does not grab limelight opportunities. He has given away a considerable fortune.
Many have tried to prise things from him in interviews with typically this result....
A conversation with Keanu Reeves is not always easy. He is not overtly obstructive, and he seems to make a huge effort to be polite. But there is an agony involved. For example, I ask him why he acts. For forty-two seconds, he says nothing. Not a word, a grunt, a prevarication, or a hint that an answer might come. For most of that time, his head is angled at ninety degrees away from me, as if that's where the oxygen is.
In this Tavern a chap can sit and sip his pint undisturbed. But kindnesses are rewarded with kindness, such as his personal disclosure above.
"Uh," he finally says, "the words that popped into my head were expressionand, uh, it's fun." A few minutes later, I lob a vague question about whether he ever wants to write or direct. He lets out a kind of quiet sigh. At its worst, it's like this. You ask Keanu Reeves a question and . . . just wait. Out in space, planets collide, stars go supernova. On earth, forests fall, animals screech and roar. People shout and rant and weep with anger and joy and just for the hell of it. And, all this time, Reeves sits there, entirely silent.On this particular occasion, the silence lasts seventy-two seconds.When the answer arrives, it includes no complete sentences and adds up to a vague, unremarkable, "No, not really."Later, after communication has become easier but after he has just paused again for an eternity, I ask this: When you take a long time to answer a question, what are you thinking about?"How to answer it," he says. "In a way that you can understand. In a way that I want to express it."
I sit and pur myself a pint and consider the lessons.