I have a friend
I have a friend (I’ll call him Jack) who came back from Vietnam full of hate. He hated “gooks” and he was pretty mad at the rest of us for not understanding what he had just been through. He explained that his job fixing the lights along the freeway seemed mundane and all the people in the cars just don’t understand the chaos and death and hate going on in the world.
We’re putting on our make-up, changing our radio stations, worrying about our mortgage payments while soldiers are dying for them. “No one seems to care”. He went home every night to his wife and kids and they didn’t seem to care or understand either. He loved her and she him, but, his wife asked him to leave because he was too angry all the time. He found a motel room that he rented by the week.
There was also a Vietnamese refugee who was working as a cook and trying to Americanize himself living in that same motel. He was friendly and sat outside his room after work, seemingly enjoying his good fortune while Jack bemoaned his sad fate. I don’t know the details of just how it happened, but, Jack and the Vietnamese fellow became friends and had beers together and talked and laughed.
Jack brought him to my house and introduced him to my kids. He was hard to understand, but he was amazingly grateful and that was clear. Jack made fun of how he messed up the English language. Then would teach him how to speak words correctly. They didn’t become lifelong friends or anything like that, but, both of them had enhanced lives because they allowed each other in.
God is a much better teacher than hate.
By the way, Jack and his wife got back together and are growing old together. He is still grumpy and unaccepting, but, not so full of hate.
hating haters still makes you a hater.