Being human, being a part of society, requires all of us to give and receive from a place of empathy and understanding. You don’t have to love every person. But understanding the world in which they live, even if you disagree with the fundamental choices they make, is crucial for growth and advancement.

When we hate and fear those who are different, we make them less than human. We take away from them the basic tenets of decency. We reduce them to little more than animals, beasts to be put down and destroyed.

We do this at a cost to our souls, our own humanity. We become numb to injustice, numb to the suffering, of people we don’t know and have never met, because they aren’t like “us.” They aren’t “normal.” Whatever happened to them…they must have done something to deserve it, right? Just start with assuming that I am a human being who doesn’t mean you any harm. Start there.