The season is rife with political rants and arguments. Social media is all abuzz with conflict, insults, and anger towards others whose views are different than ours. It is a bit unsettling, and for us sensitive folk, a bit too much. Many of us have had to take a “vacation” from social media for the sake of our sanity. Sometimes that kind of break is just what you need to restore your mental health.
A scene unfolds in my mind’s eye that occurred just this last Spring. I was coming upon an intersection, it seemed like a regular day just like any other. Yet, in a moment, I would realize that there was a frantic scene in front of me: a humongous garbage truck had collided with several cars after it’s brakes failed. It became apparent that there was at least one fatality, and perhaps there would be more if help did not arrive quickly.
A magnificent sight appeared before me. Time seemed to stand still, as approximately twenty vehicles stopped traffic. All the drivers and passengers jumped out of their cars in the middle of the road and rushed to the scene of the accident without hesitation. Each person formed a chain of good samaritanship around the accident victims, and began helping them. Frantically, but steadfastly, they went about saving the lives of others.
As a team.
I remember the climate on social media that day. There were race wars, and the latest facebook controversies, there were political disagreements and the whole world seemed to be polarized.
Yet, on Route 2 in Glen Burnie, if but for a few moments in time, there were no Republicans, no Democrats, no difference in races, no varying religions. There was simply no awareness of that. There was just humanity.
The thought occurred to me at the time, that in matters of life and death, these superficial differences that we so often play into on social media, they just don’t exist. When someone is having a heart attack, and they are facing life or death, they don’t stop to think, “Please Lord let my doctor or nurse be a Caucasian Republican Christian”, or an “African-American Buddhist Democrat”. When it’s life or death, you just don’t give a sh-t about that stuff. You just want help, from whomever will give it. What doesn’t really matter is magically swept away. What does matter is all that is left.
Perhaps, when we go to fight, or insult, or go off on someone because someone has a difference of opinion from ours, we should pause and think of that moment on Rt. 2 in Glen Burnie. When there was no awareness of those superficial differences.
There was just love and humanity. Those were the only two “parties” involved.