Letter: I’ll be your Huckleberry
I’ll be your Huckleberry because the reality is we all need to stick our necks out for each other, step out of our comfort zones, and really engage those who have a different view. Culturally we embrace this idea with open arms in our words and hide our heads in the sand when it comes to actions. If we believe what we claim to believe, then we need to really listen to and engage those with opposing views in order to truly know whether what we believe makes sense and whether what they believe also makes sense or whether we need to change our views.
If someone mentions an idea that we really don’t want to consider, we slander them, we run, we pretend that the only possible answer is the one that we have embraced because the majority embraces it. But the reality is that if we had never listened to people who held a different view from the majority our world would be an uglier and more evil place.
In the story “Huckleberry Finn,“ Huck truly believed he was incorrigibly evil because he didn’t have the gumption to turn runaway slave, Jim, in to the authorities like any really good citizen would do. Individuals whose consciences told them what was right fought against their own conscience because societal norms dictated certain paths of action. If their consciences hadn’t won, not just in the case of slavery but in multiple examples of small groups of people standing up against the societal norms, we would not be where we are today – standing on the shoulders of the greatest individuals who wouldn’t just join the mob, but chose to stand up for freedom, for justice, for humanity.
I’ll leave you with a few names so that you can remember or reference them for inspiration: Martin Luther King Jr., Joan of Arc, Robert the Bruce, Benjamin Franklin, Rosa Parks, Ghandi, Mother Theresa, Nicolaus Copernicus, the list is virtually endless and the stories are the foundation of who we are and who we want to be as human beings.