When acts of kindness become too difficult, we’re doomed in society

Calling all superheroes! Humanity’s in some serious trouble! Just look around, we’ve become a self-serving society who’ll do anything NOT to communicate with each other – the simple act of saying “hello” has become too much of a burden. Where are the acts of kindness?

I wonder who we can call to save the day? Spider Man maybe? Nah, he’s got his hands full trying to open a mega-million dollar show on Broadway. How about “The Karate Kid”? Oh wait, he’s busy dancing around with a bunch of so-called stars. What we need is a friend and neighbor who might not have worn a cutting-edge costume or had any neat tricks up his sleeve, but he always did know the right things to say. I’m talking about Fred Rogers (AKA Mister Rogers). Sadly, I’m not even sure he could save us from the path of destruction so many of us are traveling down.

After his passing in early 2003, several books began appearing on the market featuring essays, quotes and inspirational passages from everyone’s favorite neighbor. For longtime fans such as myself, I now had the chance to get to know the man behind the popular television program – his thoughts, his beliefs and his hopes for every human being, young and old, in the “neighborhoods” we live in.

“Imagine what our real neighborhoods would be like if each of us offered, as a matter of course, just one kind word to another person. There have been so many stories about the lack of courtesy, the impatience of today’s world, the road rage and even restaurant rage. Sometimes, all it takes is one kind word to nourish another person. Think of the ripple effect that can be created when we nourish someone. One kind empathetic word has a wonderful way of turning into many.”

It doesn’t take a superhero to practice this kind of stuff folks, yet no one seems to be able to do it!

We have the power to influence the lives of our fellow neighbors with something as simple as a kind word – even “hello” can brighten someone’s day. That’s not too hard, is it? While Fred Rogers certainly had his share of hardships, he knew how to treat people with the kindness and courtesy he hoped one day would become contagious. Maybe he wasn’t faster than a speeding bullet, more powerful than a locomotive or able to leap tall buildings in a single bound. But he was able to unlock the good in other people’s hearts by sharing the goodness in his. For me, he’ll always be a superhero. Unfortunately, there doesn’t seem to be anyone with the power to fill his shoes.