None of us are perfect. Hmmm . . .
None of us is perfect. Hmmm . . .
(Since I cant figure out which way to say it, I guess
that proves the point about me and so I just start this way . . .)
We all have flaws.
If a person denies a flaw, they cannot get rid of it, since
through the denial, it does not exist. If one can accept their flaws and admit the flaws
exist, then, and only then, can one work on getting rid of or correcting the flaws.
The things we do accept about ourselves, those things we are
most proud of, are the very things we become most sensitive about. For example:
My name is Gerald Edwin Reid. I am a white (Caucasian), male
(heterosexual), 50 year old (AARP member), Lutheran (ELCA), and basically a Republican
(very liberal). My hair is thinning and graying. I was born in Detroit and grew up in
Berkley, Michigan. I am a descendant of German (Janusch) and Scottish (clan Donnachaidh,
family Robertson) immigrants to the United States. I am a U.S. citizen by birth. I am
confused why I can call myself a native Michigander, but not a native American.
One of my more extreme opinions is I think we have a global
society in need of major change. We need to be shaken up a bit and "get humble"
in our relationship to the earth and the universe. A natural, dramatic global event
(asteroid impact, solar flare, extraterrestrial invasion) might be enough to wake us up.
Now, I could take the position of being greatly offended if
you assume "Gerry" is female only, or white means "Archie Bunker," or
male means "chauvinist," or 50 means "over the hill." I could easily
be put off if you think I am too opinionated. (I am, but that is irrelevant. ;-)
If we take offense at every perspective not exactly matching
our own, we spend most our lives focusing on what we think is wrong about the viewpoint of
other people. It would be far healthier and more productive for us to increase our level
of acceptance of other people and their perspectives. If we were not different, we could
not be individually unique. Through our uniqueness we find the beautiful diversity needed
for synergy, teamwork and corporate success.
A short diversion.
"Are you a PC person? In this day and age there are
people who will tell you that you must be a PC person to have any chance of being
respected, acknowledged and accepted. Authors especially must be PC people to have any
hope of being published and successful. Certainly, it is guaranteed, without PC competence
one is extremely vulnerable to the anger of those who are PC people. PC people are most
definitely on the lookout for those who are not PC people."
If you are a bit confused by the previous quotation,
thats OK. The letters PC can mean more than Personal Computer (or Pocket Change,
Presidential Candidate, Professional Crap-shooter or Professor of Chemistry). In the
quotation above, PC means "Politically Correct." Re-read the paragraph, and this
time substitute "Politically Correct" for each occurrence of PC.
My personal definition of Politically Correct is: being
reasonably sensitive to those things making up our personal identity. Based on that
definition I will say . . .
"This author, whose intent is to be PC, wrote this book
on a PC. He suggests another PC person should write PC checking software for PCs. The
author of this fantastic new software could be male or female, straight or gay, black,
brown, red, white, yellow, old, young, urban, rural, white-collar or blue-collar,
Christian, Jew, Moslem, atheist, Native-, Anglo-, African-, or whatever-American, abled,
disabled, rich, poor, or any other personally sensitive issue that comes to mind."
By the way, this person, the author of PCPCPC (Personal
Computer Politically Correct Pronoun Checker), is Attiskilkno
(at-uh-skill-no), the most diverse person on earth, who, having a very complex
family tree, has all of the characteristics mentioned.
End of diversion.
Personally, this concept of self-acceptance and
non-judgmental acceptance of other people is one of the greatest challenges in my own
life. The more research I do and the more writing I accomplish, the more I realize this is
the greatest challenge you and I will ever face.
Many people would say the ultimate dream of humankind is
peace in the universe, peace on earth and peace of mind. It is a cliché, I know, but
everything starts with the individual: First me, then you, then everybody else.
If you adopt the principle that accepting yourself and the
perspective of others are fundamental to personal growth, you are well on your way to
getting the most value from this book. As for me, I continue to work on this issue in my
life. I will most definitely have it mastered before my 200th birthday, how about you?
When people "lighten-up" on each other and begin a
sincere effort to embrace the wonderful diversity of others, they instantly recognize the
uniqueness of their own potential. These people quickly come to understand that only
they can contribute the distinctive set of experiences and learning which built