Wood Middle School sponsored a “No Place for Hate” essay contest. The winner will receive two Spurs tickets that include a courtside experience. More importantly, there were a lot of submissions and great ideas about how society can change for the better. The winning essay is posted below. Congratulations to Ember Reyes, 8th Grader.
No Place for Hate Essay
Hate, to feel hostility or animosity toward; detest; to feel dislike or distaste for; hatred; an object of hatred. Is that really how our society defines the word that brings so much pain?
Many people have been influenced and affected by hating or being hated. If our world recognizes the power of this, why haven’t we done something about it. Sure, some people try, but this is a worldly problem; everyone, of the world, needs to stand up and end the disheartening hatred. However, the big question comes up: where do we start?
I believe, it starts with the heart. We all need to put our pride behind and self-reflect. We need to do more than feel convicted; we need to, together as a people of this world, endeavor to alter the darkness clouding our world. Just because we want to change something, doesn’t mean that we will be the ones to stand up and actually get the job done. I feel, that we can get this world shining if we all put aside our differences, that are holding us back, to come together to mutate our big blue marble. Dr. Seuss once said, “Unless someone cares a whole awful lot, nothing will ever get better.” We as a people, should take responsibility for the hate that has spread, because of us, and clean it up. My mother tells me, “If you made the mess, you better take responsibility for it and clean it up.” Those are just words, but, with effort, they can become a story. We could do what’s thought to be impossible, but it’ll only have a worldly impact if everyone did it.
Hatred. Judgment. Negativity. How can light, along with love, come out of that? Truth: it only takes one flicker, no matter how small, to make light. But, why do we judge others when we are imperfect ourselves? We don’t realize the destruction we do, to ourselves and others, by noticing each other’s flaws. We all have them, so why do we choke ourselves and others by holding them in our hearts. Instead of holding them, take a deep breath and… Let. Them. Go. Our flaws are what makes our beauty brighter, if you choose to better yourself through them. Why try to better yourself by labeling others when you have yourself to focus on? If we all don’t strengthen ourselves, getting the job done would be arduous.
We were given our lives to make a difference. Negative or positive; you choose. Whatever you do with your life, know that it, makes, a, difference. We were put on the earth to better each other and ourselves. You are a uniquely gifted life form, that has potential. Instead of leaving it like that, change your potential to an experience and a time where you were the stronger person. If someone is more skilled at an event than you, why make an enemy of them? You could better yourself, and them by making them an ally. Not everyone will love and respect everyone, every time. Therefore, if someone hates you, turn the other cheek and love them. It’s not easy but if you don’t like something, you don’t do it. Furthermore, why would you hate others, if they hate you and you despise it? In the Bible, Luke 6:27 says, “But I say to you, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you.”
Hating someone is easier than loving someone, but that doesn’t make it right. Choose to be the smarter person. Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” You don’t have to love everything someone says and does, however, you could still show love to the person. Our world is dark and scary enough, why not add an extra light by loving instead of hating. I like to remind myself saying, “Be friendly to all, and friends with some.” Reality is, you cannot be friends with everyone, people have different expectations in friendships. However, you can be amiable and congenial. My point is, we as a people, are creative. We can use creativity to solve and end the consequences, the mess, of our actions. We underestimate the trigger effect, influences, and problems our actions produce. Mahatma Gandhi once said, that undergirds my views, “Be the change that you want to see in the world.” If everyone, or a lot more people had this mindset, we would have a lot of global issues resolved, including the increasing levels of hate. Now that you are aware of where you should start and what to look forward to, ask yourself, “Am I going to be the observer and miss out on the influential story or am I going to be in the influential story?”