Empathy is your weapon

Dear Millennials,

Well, it’s here. The inauguration is complete and the devolution of our truths has begun. There is also a continued power struggle for who will be the most right on the internet. let me ask you, my friends to ignore that. Please, learn from the silliness of those you are witnessing. Ignore the fight over the noise- the fight over the power brokering. Arm  yourself with the greatest weapon we have as humans: Empathy.

Look at those with whom you share space, wherever that may be.Look at those who are suffering, seek their eyes and their stories. Don’t look away. Your humanity will be defined by how you sit with those whose stories do not mirror your own.Your generation will be remembered for how it responded to those who are  in pain, not those who are in power.

Empathy is difficult- particularly because it requires discomfort. I do not consider pity the same  as empathy. I see friends and family who have said to me that yes, they feel sorry for those who may lose healthcare or those women who won’t get Planned Parenthood services but that is their problem. Feeling sorry for someone is an easy way of dismissing yourself from the responsibility and the burden and the joy of loving your neighbor. And it’s an easy way to  be that team member in the group assignments that we all despised: the one who was only out for his grade and not the effort of the team as a whole.

I am asking you friends, be the team member that looks out for all of us. Be the team member that reaches for the one who is hurting. And when you find that person, use that empathy,that compassion, to drive you toward change. This change will come not because you will profit from it but because we will all be better for it.

Change the world, my millennials,

I love you so-

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