A Leading Perspective

Pragmatic insights for the leader in you

All Are Welcome, unless they aren’t

“Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, the wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me: I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”
Emma Lazarus

I just read the The New York Times article re: Twenty-five Governor’s wanting to close their borders to Syrian refugees and I found myself crying as I read it. My goodness, what a week we have had…the recent events around our globe, and subsequent events in our own nation and in my own state, have saddened me like nobody’s business.

Lest you think this is a political post, let me assure you it is not. It is a post about humanity.

Now, I’m far from a humanitarian. I’ve got a long way to go to be as selfless, giving and compassionate as many of the humanitarian and philanthropic people in my circle. But darnit, I am human and even at a basic level, I believe what is going on in our country is wrong.

It wasn’t too long ago that our country, despite its divisions and despite its struggles, honored and respected the opinions and guidance from some great humanitarians.

  • Martin Luther King
  • Rosa Parks
  • Princess Diana
  • Mother Theresa
  • Mahatma Ghandi
  • Eleanor Roosevelt
  • William Booth

The above short list represents some great minds but, more importantly, some Herculean sized hearts. I wonder why the masses in our country appear to no longer value the opinions of these and other similar humanitarians?

More importantly, I wonder what these extraordinary people would think of us today?

  • Would their hearts hurt knowing that nearly half of our country wants to shut our borders to a specific culture and race?
  • Would their hearts bleed knowing that we would rather lace the pockets of greed than fill the pockets of the unfortunate?
  • Would they be saddened to learn that our country’s leaders can’t look beyond their own positions and interests to do what is best for our country?
  • Would they be disheartened to read and hear the hate, bigotry and spitefulness spewed out on any social or news medium to any willing listener who enjoys the drama and subsequent dismantling of our country’s spirit?

My goodness, I think they would cry as I do.

I am just a mere human, nothing like the remarkable people noted above, and I am grieving for the death of compassion in our country.

I am a simple mom, a loving sibling and grateful daughter and I am discouraged by the abhorrence I read from people who I assumed were just like me.

I am a humble member of my community, trying hard to give back when I can and I am dispirited in the realization that avarice is more common than generosity.

I am just a mere human.

I am someone who believes in our constitution. Years ago, I read the words on the Statue of Liberty and I felt tremendous pride in knowing this is what my country represented. Finally, every week when I attend my church service, I believe that indeed, all are welcome!

I know what I have to do.

  • I need to keep believing.
  • I need to keep giving.
  • I need to keep forgiving.
  • I need to keep loving.

But goodness, I wish more would join me.




Heather Kinzie • November 17, 2015

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