by Gray Graham
It was not long ago in the business world and probably the general public, no one would expect an international corporation to issue public statements about current social issues. After all businesses exist only to make money, they are not created to have morals.
Of course this was never true. A business is nothing more than an individual or group of people that use their collective resources to increase their wealth. The policies of nations have always been decided by those with wealth who use that wealth to influence what decisions their leaders made. This has been the case throughout human history.
So it should come as no surprise that companies today quickly issue statements against sexism and racism. They know that for a lot of their clients and employees these statements provide a level of dedication that can not be achieved any other way. They are also aware that the opposite is true and a number of clients will be turned off by these messages and no longer do business with them. I am sure a lot of office meetings with a lot of sweating have happened the past couple of years trying to decide; to speak or stay silent.
The other side of this coin are those public figures that have a very loud opinion on just about everything the instant it happens but when the world is discussing a topic like say racism they are strangely silent. So many people like this lack the courage to embrace their current unpopular opinion. We all can pretty much guess where they stand on the current issue, but until they speak we can only speculate but their silence speaks volumes.
Now do I put much value into companies making these big proclamations in support of social issues? No. I am much too cynical for that. Even though I am old enough to remember that my boss would drop the n-word when addressing me, I am not naive enough to believe that this many hearts have changed in that short of time. I know that companies are making these statements because they believe it is good business not necessarily because they believe in them.
So do you really want a company to make a hollow statement or would you prefer they just kept on doing business as usual? I have seen plenty of companies issue statements that I know do not support the cause they just said they did. For instance you can not be a cosmetics company that issues a statement saying you support Black Lives Matter but then have no products for Black women.
This is probably why it takes protests in the streets and threats of boycotts to get a statement out of most companies. In a country like ours where everything from fighting a pandemic to kids watching TV is a political issue, companies are always caught between a rock and a hard place, which begs the question do we really want our companies taking a stand on social issues? It’s great when you see some support what you believe but not so great when you see them support the other side.
It has always been my belief that good people shine through and you can find them anywhere. I have worked for companies that had nice corporate slogans and mission statements that were as bad as you can be. I have worked at companies that never said anything about anything but making a profit that had some of the best people I have ever known working there.
At the end of the day actions speak louder than words. Having your PR person issue a statement that gets you likes and retweets for a week is one thing. Firing a high profile employee as soon as they do something immoral or making a policy in support of civil rights that you know is going to upset the majority of your customers says a lot more. Let’s pray for and work with the people that control businesses to show them that they are not separate from society but an integral part of who we are as human beings.
by Gray Graham
This year probably more than any year in recent memory we are seeing just how important fathers are to our lives. It is not a new revelation but it is one that causes a lot of people to feel a certain way because of their personal life experiences.
When we think of our fathers we get a certain feeling of love and confidence that gives us the strength to go through many of life’s difficult situations. Our father’s love and feelings carries us through our lives and is the cornerstone of so many aspects of who we are.
Well that is the way some people feel, others feel nothing but pain and anguish. While many people have a loving mother in their lives, for some a father is a missing element that never gets replaced. This missing element is something that affects a lot of things especially a view of self.
I remember many, many years ago, how people felt about children that had lost their fathers. Their families and the community would try their best to shower love and support to the family to help fill the void left by the missing father. Grandfathers and uncles would make sure that they would take on the father role in the children’s lives.
But sometimes fathers are not lost they just go missing or never were there. These situations are probably the worst for their children because it feeds negative feelings of abandonment, neglect, and self-esteem that follow them throughout their lives. It is something many never overcome no matter how hard they try.
We have a lot of children growing up today that have either an absent father or a part-time father. Time spent with their father is rare and fleeting, reserved for weekends, holidays, and summer vacation. The daily routine of life with a father is missing from their lives. They don’t know what it is like to have a father available to support them every time he is needed.
Our society has attempted to fix this problem by negating the need of fathers in a child’s life. We as a society have decided it is not important to have your father in your life. The family foundation of husband and wife; father and mother is a pipe dream or nightmare to many. I don’t think many people give a thought to the complicated life situations they place their children or how it will affect them the rest of their lives.
Can I say that fathers are important? Can I also say that husbands that are fathers are also important? Can I say that families that are made of fathers and mothers are important? Can I say that these things are not only important but very much needed?
Fathers are the foundation on which families are built. They are the rock that supports the entire family. They are the bond that keeps the family balanced and together. Take away the father and the family becomes unbalanced and far too often crumbles apart.
Fathers provide love, support, and protection for us and we definitely need all those things today. Fathers sacrifice so much so that they can take care of their families. They try to do everything they can for their families while asking for nothing in return. Not even a simple thank you.
Instead of diminishing fathers to make others feel better, let’s support fathers and understand that they help to uplift everyone in their lives. So many fathers not only support their families but they are often the pillars of their communities. Many fathers take on the added responsibility of being a father to the fatherless.
One thing that has been great to see are the expressions of love from so many sons and daughters for their fathers. Mothers and children that have a great father in their lives embrace that blessing and return it in kind. There is nothing like the love of a father and it is an important piece of a loving, happy family.
by Gray Graham
When I first started writing for our website many years ago, I was the person that pointed out those things that most people overlooked that were maybe not so great. I tried to do it in the most loving, positive way I knew how making sure to learn along the way.
Funny thing is that approach got me a lot of hate, a lot of attacks, and a lot of people that walked away from my loving message. Even the person that first supported me in my efforts has since decided that path was not for them.
I would say that many people today believe things are worse today than they were back then. Sure some people have more money, better jobs, married, and kids; but is the average person happier today than they were just a few years ago?
Even if we are happy in our own personal individual lives how often does that happiness spread to other people? Do we feel a similar joy when we interact with other people? I am guessing most people feel like the answer is no.
Unlike so many inspirational and motivational speakers, I am not going to pretend like there are not a lot of people doing a lot of bad things to others in this world. Over the past few years there are groups of people that have made it their life’s work to make the lives of others as miserable and as difficult as possible. The kicker is they do it with a smile and it would seem with great joy and pleasure.
Often there is a reason that many people appear to be cold and guarded when dealing with other people. Just in our everyday lives most deal with a number of situations that test our faith and our patience and our strength to endure.
So yes there are a lot of bad people in this world doing bad things, that doesn’t mean that we should let their bad behavior affect our love and caring for others and the hope of a better tomorrow. I have seen far too many people that have decided that the only way to fight mean and nasty people is to become mean and nasty also. It is the in thing to be bad, mean, and nasty. Who today wants to be thought of as a good nice person?
I for one do and will do so even if I am the only one. Luckily for me there are many good people in this world. They are not perfect. They are not always nice. They don’t always do the right thing, but they do always work to be better and they get it right more times than not.
You can still do what’s right in life without being dragged down to the levels of evil and wickedness. You just have to accept that you may not have much company. I would go so far as to say you should expect that most people are going to behave exactly the same regardless of how much love and kindness you send their way.
Being the best you is something that you do for yourself and your own peace, not so that it will be reciprocated by others. We are blessed because sometimes it is and that is what makes life so great. Remember the next time something upsets you and makes you angry, it is just as easy to make the best of that situation with as much love and hope as you can find as it is to give into anger, hate, and despair. It is always our choice, so choose wisely. Trust me you will feel much better.