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View Diary: "It's Not White Guilt. It's Empathy," I told the man who bought me a drink. (141 comments)

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  •  There but for the Grace of God, go I (31+ / 0-)

    There but for the Grace of God, go I

    I am not a religious man, but I like that phrase.  Often, because of the word "god" in there, I get sidetracked and miss the point.  And the point is simple: that could be me.

    That could be me getting profiled as a bad guy and shot.  That could be me minding my own business and then forced to be a TV star witness and having everyone can ridicule me.  That could be me filled with racist fear and hate, ranting and arming myself for the end of civilization.

    But because of chance, I am not.  I am not one of those people only because of some good fortune - grace if you will - that came my way.  I am lucky, not better.

    Empathy is that knowledge: that could have been me; I am no better, only lucky.

    "The fool doth think he is wise: the wise man knows himself to be a fool" - W. Shakespeare

    by Hugh Jim Bissell on Tue Jul 16, 2013 at 08:10:09 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Good rule to live by. (0+ / 0-)

      I'd argue that most of Zimmerman's defenders, regardless of their skin color, would feel very differently about him if it'd been their child shot.

      "But the kid started it" would not have been considered a valid excuse, most likely, if it was one of those people's children.

      If I had a child, who was followed and subsequently shot for simply walking home in the rain, unarmed, and the killer walked, I would probably hunt the son of a bitch down and kill him myself.  And I think that many, many people would at least think about doing the same thing, if it were their child.

      But because it wasn't, they can jump on the "thug" bandwagon.

      These kinds of things also always have a tendency to remind me of A Time To Kill, and the whole "Now imagine she was white" thing.

      I would argue that if one truly has empathy, it's hard not to be a progressive.  I know it's why I'm one.

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