Losing the Beauty

“Father Time Overcome by Love, Hope, and Beauty” by Simon Vouet. I’m no art expert, but it seems we can still appreciate the push for love, hope, and beauty, though I’d have thought that Time might have given in by now.

Last week, I talked about how sad it was that my students had a stubborn bigoted view of the world. This week, I want to discuss the effects of such views. Not only had they completely lost the meaning of two fantastic essays, but lousy attitudes such as theirs continue to put a black eye on a beautiful region of our country that they supposedly love.

Some of the attitudes in America’s southern states have always been a sort of anomaly to me. On one hand, they are famous for their hospitality and respectful manner (I love the habits of addressing people with “sir” or “ma’am”). And who doesn’t like their terms of affection for complete strangers (shoog, darlin’, hun, etc.)? 🙂

I think we all know the other side to the South that is like it’s evil twin.

Now, I’m certainly not indicating that all Southerners with these habits have bigoted views, but some do. I remember one of the kids who didn’t “get” the Canada essay because of being considered a “Yankee” by the author. Otherwise, he was actually a very respectful kid. He was always dressed like a ranch hand and while he wasn’t an exceptional student, he completed his work, was never rude to me, or caused a disruption in class.

Last week, I saw this charming Cheerios commercial and heard about the controversy over it. I wonder how that student would have viewed it?

Would he not have even considered the premise of the scene – that is, a little girl who loves her daddy so much that she want’s to make sure that his heart is healthy? Given that he failed to see the humor in the Canada essay, I’m disheartened to say that he probably would not.

If there is love in a family, why should the color of the skin matter? People have all sorts of views on this commercial, for what I would think to be strange reasons. And that’s okay. Anyone is entitled to their opinions.

But when the beauty of love is overlooked because people are offended… that really doesn’t sit right with me.

I know I have views that some people would find offensive. I may find other’s views offensive. I must admit that my gut reaction to people who disliked the commercial for racial reasons was, “They must bleed a different color…ugly.” But then, to forget completely that we are all human and have our own beauties about us, I certainly hope I never fall into that trap. If I ever am, I beg of you, using an open mind, call me out on it. I will listen.

What did you think of the commercial? Can you see it’s charm, or do you see skin color? Are you appalled that some of us are still stuck in the 50’s? 

7 thoughts on “Losing the Beauty

  1. Shea, it’s sad, but that attitude is not limited to the south. Last week I was at a friend’s house and this commercial came on. I made a comment about how sad it was that there was any sort of controversy over it, and she said, “I was raised to believe that God made different kinds of people with the intention that they should remain separate.” I lost a lot of respect for her that day – especially since I myself am part of an interracial marriage.

    1. *sigh* yes, I would have lost respect too. My parents may both be white, but even then, I can still appreciate the different cultural backgrounds. Add a loving step-family from a whole other background, and I’ve learned that if there’s love, race makes no difference.

      When I was writing this piece, I was thinking of Downton Abbey, and the romance between the youngest daughter and the chauffer. Even being an Irishman didn’t seem to be as big a problem as the fact that he was a servant. I wanted to shout to the TV, “Who cares!? They’re in love!” lol (Yes, I know it’s totally fiction, but that’s what makes it a great series, the easy suspension of disbelief 😉 )

    2. Oh! Also, I once worked with someone who believed that the Bible says we should not interracially marry. Her argument? The first part of 2 Corinthians 6:14 – “Do not be unequally yoked.”

      Okay, forget the total disregard of context for her argument. She was clearly indicating that the Bible was talking about yolks – as in ‘egg yolks.’ Apparently she did not recognize the two words as being homonyms. Maybe she had never seen a yoke of oxen and didn’t realize the difference in meaning?

      Anyway, I’ve never read anything in the New Testament to indicate that interracial marriage is a sin. That’s a man-made one and fortunately, I don’t follow that rule. 😀

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