On Sunday October 18, at 4pm I completed my Kallion assignment for this week “On Being a Better Friend To Humanity” and these were my reponses.
First, what is a friend to humanity ? I took this phrase as someone who genuinely cares about people and does everything in their power to ensure the safety of others. To be honest it was hard at first to point out someone that I feel is a friend to humanity but then it struck me . I was thinking of someone who I knew of that helped me and my kind, African Americans, but I realized that a friend of humanity cares for all. No matter if you are black, white, blue, or purple, as long as you are a human they care about you and your well being. I thought of this job description and whose job it is to make sure that everyone is safe and secure, the president.
Now, I definitely feel like President Trump is not the person to talk about so I choose to talk about President Obama. During his time in office, President Barack Obama worked to improve the lives of all Americans, including African Americans, by providing economic and educational opportunities, improving healthcare coverage, working to ensure that the criminal justice system is applied fairly to all citizens, and championing workforce development to ensure we continue to develop and retain the strongest, most productive workforce in the world. During this administration, African Americans made strides in many of these areas. Not only did he accomplish many things, his demeanor is what helped him. In every picture and video token, president Obama is seen smiling and happy, and that is just his character.
I would describe him as Eloquent, statesmanlike, has the common touch, easy manner, puts you at your ease, presidential, humanity, family man, stylish, patriotic, interventionist, and American. He did have to overcome hardships and face racial tension to become a friend of humanity. He made history as the first black president of the United States, and as you can imagine this milestone was not a piece of cake to accomplish. Racism was not a major element of mainstream Republican opposition to his presidency but was an issue on the political fringe. Obama faced repeated questions about whether he was born in the US despite there being no evidence he was not.
I believe that Barack Obama decided to be president because he knew that a change needed to be made, and he believed that he could make the change. I don’t think it was necessarily out of commitment or duty nor religion, but just out of motivation and genuine intentions. I would describe him as a philanthropist because he was a friend to many communities, not only African Americans but all races.
Philanthropy is a strategic process of giving that seeks to identify the root causes of systemic issues and make the world a better place by tackling societal problems at their roots. There are many ways they accomplish this such as making donations, but I do think someone can be a philanthropist and not have pure intentions for humans. President Trump is a prime example, he only does things for personal gain. For example, he may donate to an organization to get around paying for taxes not because he genuinely cares.
I agree with Ida B Wells when she states that humanity in all ages has always been a disorganized sense of power, usually separated by church and state. Also that in order to be a leader you have to have love for humanity , because that’s how racism comes to play. If you do not have love for all but only a specific race, group, or class there is no way you can be a great leader. A leader leads all it’s people, they do not pick or choose nor discriminate. So I agree with Ida B Wells when she says in order to lead you have to have a love for humanity.
While I was reading “The House By The Side of The Road” by Sam Walter Foss I took the meaning of the poem as, by being a friend to all characters on the stage of life, whatever part they playing at the time, we are not playing a role that is above or below them, but we are recognizing them, just as we are, fellow travelers crossing the stage of life. With this realization of equality, lies the hope and beauty of a new world. I do agree with the poet and his view that if everyone acted as equals and did not believe they were about others, life would be so much better. To be honest I do not think I could be a friend to humanity. I believe that a friend to humanity is someone that is genuine, does not discriminate, and is just naturally a good person. Although I am a good person, I, like most people, do not show generosity and love for others. Which is why in class on Tuesday when we were put into breakout rooms to answer a few questions one of the questions asked, What percentage of the world’s population do you believe has a strong and frequent love of humanity? My group said 50 percent or less, while most of the other groups said 35 percent or less. Less than half of the population was everyone’s answer which shows the undeniable truth. Most do not have a love for humanity and the reasons may differ.
The next question was how can you recognize if someone has love for humanity? The person has a genuine personality, which does not discriminate no matter the race, sex,etc. When people choose to uplift others and put others’ needs before theirs. We were also asked, is love of humanity a choice? How do you know? Love for humanity is definitely a choice. No one is born evil, but people are taught to hate based on skin tone, sexual orientation, place of origin, gender, etc. However, I think that in order to actually have a productive and civil society, we must have love for each other and our individual situations. Lastly, what is more important for leadership than love for humanity? My group said other than love for humanity (philanthrōpia), it is important for leaders and those that practice leadership is self-love, confidence to lead others to do the same, forethought.
As I was plotting my leadership development I was asked to reflect on the following behaviors as I consider my own degree of humanity. There definitely are certain things that I would do for any and all human beings under the right circumstances? For example, I would give my last to those I see in need whenever I can. I do not give to everyone, only those that I see need help, for example, homeless people. I do greet everyone that I see on a day to day basis, a simple how you doing does not hurt anyone. If I could I would help everyone in need. I’m studying to be a lawyer right now and one of my main visions is to be such a great lawyer that I am able to start my own firm. I am definitely going to do pro bono cases . I do not consciously try to make everyone better who comes in contact with me by being the best person I can be so that I may rub off on them. I am myself around everyone I meet, the more you hang around me the more you will get to know me.
I do not make friends quickly, but that is more so as a result of being hurt and betrayed one too many times by people that I called friends. I am though generous with social networks? I will introduce one friend to another if I think they are a good match and if I think their personalities align where they could possibly become good friends. Human beings do not interest me if I am being honest though. I feel as though all humans are the same in one way or another. However, I do like hearing about the problems of other people and do my best to solve them, if I love or have love for that person. I do take pleasure in the success of others, even when they are not bonded to you by ties of family or close friendship. This is because I do not envy or hate others and I believe that if one wins we will win. I do grieve when they grieve, but that is more out of empathy and or sympathy.
The goals that I have for my career and my leadership will be the kinds of things that will benefit all humans if I am successful in reaching them. The job of lawyers is to protect and defend the innocent and that is what I attend to do if I become successful. My love of humanity does inform my convictions and give me the strength to persevere, but it does not allow me to show self-restraint in the face of “ignorance, superstition, and envy”? I believe that by showing restraint and staying quiet you are not helping anyone at all. Correction is what is needed, people need to be called out, that is the only way that real change is going to come about. Lastly I was asked what motivates my love for humanity? The answer is pleasure in the success of others, a desire for glory or a legacy, and a divine or cosmic reward system (like winning the love of a divinity or a place in the afterlife). I just want things to be equal and fair.