Just a little respect and tolerance…

One of my clients came in to do his application for food stamps. When he sat down he said he had a name change. He produced court papers, new id, social security card. When I saw his date of birth and noticed he was the same age as me (28), so I asked him What made him change his name.

He went on to say he changed it b/c of some family abuse. I said ok and turned to keep working. But he continued talking. He said, “my brother tried to shoot me.” – looked up in shock. “He tried to shoot me because I am gay. So if they can’t accept me for who I am, then I don’t want to be a part of the family. So I changed my name, and I hope to never see them again.”

I have a problem with this, not just when it comes to this guys situation. Just in general. I am bothered at the lack of respect for person. It bothers me to see someone being treated unfairly b/c of their lifestyle, gender, race, etc.

I take issue when closed minded people condemn whole groups of people b/c it doesn’t fit into their idea of what’s right. Where is the compassion? Where is the tolerance?


People go through life trying to fit certain labels. Stay in the box, don’t trouble the water, bc they are scared of what their family, friends, neighbors, employers will think of them or scared that they may be treated unfairly or abused.

That’s no way to live.

What if you were condemned, blacklisted, mocked, for everything you did/said/thought that doesn’t line up with what has been deemed the social norm?

What if your deep dark secrets became public knowledge? Wouldn’t you want people to still love you, respect you.

When did we as a people, miss out on the life lesson of compassion? Or just general respect?

We all should have learned at SOME point in life that you don’t have to agree with everything a person does to give them respect.

At the end of the day, when you strip away all the labels, knock down the box walls, we are all human. We’re not catholic, baptist, christian, atheist. We’re not gay, straight, bi or tri sexual. We’re not black, wht, indian, asian. We are all humans.

We all need to practice being a bit more tolerant of those who are different we are.

And on that note, we all need to practice being an individual. Stop wearing the labels society has prescribed for you.

Do you! Do what makes you happy!

Be an individual!

Think for yourself!

Get so caught up in who you are, and what your doing, that you don’t have time to worry about how someone is choicing to live out their life.

Tolerance people. Basic respect.

And I’m off my soapbox


  1. Oh that was a good soapbox sermon!

    I understand what you mean. I myself grew up with “two uncles”. No one really agreed with their lifestyle, but I was taught to respect and love them. They were a couple and that was that. They were part of the family.

    People got a lot of stuff going on behind closed doors. That gives us no right to point the finger and judge others. When we do that, we are actually afraid to deal with our own isshas…

  2. Ahhh I feel you.

    People aren’t free to be themselves or live the way they want to live because they are scared what other people will think.

    I could go on and on and on.

    Great post.

  3. It all starts and ends with respect…

    Some people are afraid of the unknown…but it is not your life to be afraid of.

    Ignorance is not bliss.

  4. I’ve heard of families having a hard time accepting another family members lifestyle, but to go THAT far is CRAZY. That is really sad and I hope that his family eventually come around, but I don’t know how you mend fences with someone who tried to shoot you.

    People are so ignorant and find so many different reasons to justify their beliefs or why they disagree with someone elses. Bottom line, people need to mind their own business and respect other peoples choices. Everyone deserves happiness.

  5. That’s awful. I here people that don’t have kids and those that have young children spout off that kind of intolerant bullshyt. I’ve told quite a few: careful, you don’t know who or what you’re raising! This is why so many young people commit suicide because they have idiot azz family members. I feel sorry for that young man that he has had to go through that. I could careless about the sexual orientation of my children. That is such a minute part of who they are.

  6. This was a great post!

    I feel for that young man. I almost feel for his family because they are so dumb and just don’t realize it but I cannot sympathize with ignorance…I just can’t. I hope he does well in life and has a good support system of friends that can now be his family.

  7. my biggest problem is when they are untruthful. i found out within the last couple months from BD that 2 girls we went to college with are and were lesbian at the time… i was kind of pissed off! it seems everyone knew but my naive ass. i was kind of suspect about 1 but had no idea about the other. i don’t know… i’ve become more tolerable since finding out that a couple of my cousins are lesbian… i just don’t understand… i be asking question and shit… but i just don’t understand why they want to feel on some ta~tas! not me… but to each his own!

  8. Dear God Patrice,
    There is a writer in you dying to come out. That’s on the REAL tip. You have been blessed with a gift. Everything you post points to that fact. I’m trying to start blogging, but I haven’t figured that out yet. I’m also learning to sew, but that’s another story. I was so pissed when you blocked everybody out of your site, but now I know why. A friend pointed me to your newest site last week. I’m so glad that you do what you do and you JUS MAKE MY DAY!

  9. I just love it espacially the “think 4 urself” and “be an indivual” I’m happy you were really paying attention in our counseling sessions. Good job!!!

  10. I feel for that young man. That’s just sad.

    My male cousin finally came out the closet bout 3 yrs ago. He figured the family wouldn’t agree with him. We already knew. He is still treated the same. I can’t imagine being a part of a family that young man.

  11. Ironic that you posted this. I was talking to a co-worker this morning, and she said to me I want your take on this. ” You remember so & so and I said yes… Well he and I attended law school together…blah, blah blah. I ran into her a few days ago…

    I immediately said She… and she went on to tell me had so & so had did the change and how much more happy she is blah, blah blah and Oh could you imagine the frilly dresses…blah blah

    My parting comment was… Life is about Doing You and so & so did just that…. and that’s what counts.

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