The Courage to Call 911

Today I received a lesson in understanding other people’s perspectives. In general I think that if you are non-judgmental and compassionate toward other people suffering than you have an understanding of their perspective.

“The courage to call 911” that is what she said.

It truly saddens me that I could not grasp how much fear a person must be experiencing if that fear is too enveloping to call for help. I was non-judgmental and compassionate upon hearing that statement. However, seizing hold of that 1st person perspective was un-attainable to me. Even the 3rd person “conversation” perspective was only a little more hard-hitting than an Oprah or AIDS in Africa TV show. The question I asked myself was “do you have to feel a relationship to the subject to take a perspective”?

I overheard this conversation at lunch today between an inner city social worker and a young teenage male that she seemed to be counseling. The dialogue bounced between school, future, life in the city, fear, and faith. The counselor spoke quite gracefully of life beyond the street (I am assuming she once lived in the inner city) and dispelled proudly her prayers of request for the inner city youth. “The courage to call 911” was at the top of her prayer request, “if the community could only become reactionary to crime that would be a starting point”.

I am thankful that I never had to live a life that would expose me to this type of environment/fear. Non-bigotry, non-judgmental and compassion for other’s suffering is the only starting point that I can even think of to suggest a solution to these problems/perspectives.

A deep bow of gratitude & a prayer for her prayer to be answered is my request.