I was never one to get too excited over meeting a celebrity. I have found that I generally like to give people their space rather than to ask for a photo or an autograph, but I seem to be in the minority in that aspect. Today, I noticed that a former Major League Baseball player works out at the same gym as me, and instead of bothering him to sign my shoes or take a photo, I just allowed him to work out in peace. Living in New York I have had multiple run ins with people who would be considered famous, and while the level of fame of these individuals varies, I imagine they all value privacy as much as the rest of us. I am not trying to say I have never been “star struck,” but even when I was a child who was meeting his favorite athlete, I realized that they were just as human as myself. When I noticed the athletes who I regularly watched play on television or from the crowd were not much taller than my father, I started to see them differently. I realized that these people were not the larger than life figures that I once thought they were, and that they were just ordinary people with some extraordinary talents. It may seem strange, but I have actually seen some “famous” individuals who seemed to be expecting to be approached, but were shocked that everyone was busy with their own lives rather than fussing about them. I know that everybody is different, and that many of these celebrities may actually enjoy the attention, but I will continue to treat them the same way I expect to be treated when I am a stranger just trying to enjoy my day.
The way you see people is the way you treat them, and the way you treat them is what they become.
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
How often do you think about the way you treat others, and how do you determine the worth of those you see? This quote makes a bold statement, the author seems to be saying the actions of others are defined by the way they are viewed. While I don’t fully agree with the idea that a persons portrayal defines their actions, I do believe in what is called a self fulfilling prophecy. A self fulfilling prophecy is a prediction that directly or indirectly causes itself to become true, for example constantly calling somebody a “bad person” my eventually cause them to yield the behaviors of a “bad person.” I agree that treating everyone with respect will create a happier society, but in order to treat others with respect, we must try to understand others without labels. This society is bent on individuality, and unfortunately the idea of individuality always comes with the conformity that is societal labels. I like to see each person as a unique individual, but in this time of heightened personal awareness people seem to want to be unique together, which makes very little sense. The labels people make in order to define themselves often become the confines by which others use to judge them. I don’t think we will ever come to a point in which labels are no more, but I would love to see all people treated fairly. The basic gist of this quote is to treat everyone with respect, so they can in turn become respectable people, and we would all be able to live in a respectable society.
Memorial Day is a federal holiday dedicated to remembering those who died while fighting for their country. Many people see this day as a time to take a vacation or a time for barbecues, and while it is fine to have a day off from work, I believe everyone should take a second to think about the soldiers who fought for this country. Since World War 1 there has been over 600,000 U.S. Military deaths, and with the current conflicts going on worldwide that number is slowly rising. It is terrible that so many young men and women are dying everyday to defend their country, but that seems to be the sad price for freedom. I don’t like the idea of war but I am not a pacifist, I understand that in order for there to be peace, there must be a struggle. I hope this country can live peaceably within itself in order to honor the lives of those who fought to preserve it, and use today as an example that we have not forgot the bravery of those fallen troops.