June 6, 2014

PUBLISHER’S CORNER – My Momma Done Told Me…

By Eloise Graham

Last month we celebrated Mother’s Day. Many of us reminisced about the words of wisdom our mothers instilled in us. The one saying that immediately came to mind for me was, “Don’t ever do anything that you would be ashamed to read about the next day on the front page of the paper.” Well… I was young, probably seven or eight, and I vowed then and there to never go to the bathroom again! I didn’t want to see that, or anyone else to see than, on the front page of the paper! But, as I pondered her wisdom, I realized there was a big difference between “embarrassed” and “ashamed.”

We have all done embarrassing things that we would prefer others not see; stumbling on a crack in the sidewalk, slipping on an icy patch, forgetting a good friend’s name when we go to introduce them, pushing a door to open it when the door clearly says “PULL”… the list could go on and on. All of these would be embarrassing to us if we read about them on the front page the next day. But these are all things that we can laugh at ourselves about. My mom’s advice was for those devastating acts of shame. Those things that not only embarrass, but also bring shame. Taking something that doesn’t belong to us, mistreating a child or animal or slander against a colleague – some really shameful act. She gave good advice.

Another thing she told me was to never judge. Too often we think we know the whole story on something, and we judge someone’s actions. Maybe it was an action that we only saw him or her do once, but we assume we now know that person.

All of this came back to me today as I watched the news about a man that kicked his son down a skateboard ramp. With today’s technology, this action of 4 seconds was caught on tape and has gone viral. (The boy is fine.) As I watched the broadcast, I thought, “Too bad his mom never told him about his actions being in the newspaper – or in this case, all over the internet.” This man has now been judged by the world on that 4-second action. He has lost his job, his friends in the community, and much more. The family spoke out about it today. His wife, while she disapproved of his action of pushing the boy on his skateboard down the steep ramp, (the boy, an avid skateboarder, was afraid of this higher, steeper ramp) said that her husband was a loving, caring father and made a dumb mistake. The father pushed the boy down the ramp in hopes of helping him overcome his fear of that particular ramp. Yet, because of this snippet on the internet, many have judged him as being evil and no good. Child Services have been called in to investigate. Then I thought, “Too bad so many of us are quick to judge when we have no idea as to what is really happening.”

My mother had much wisdom. Now go ponder some of the great things your mother taught you!

Filed Under: Family