It’s Community Day at Taking it to the Streets
I was talking to my friend Sandy tonight and the topic of loyalty came up. One thing we have in common is that we’re both fiercely loyal to our friends. Though I don’t often find forgiveness to be an easy virtue, in MOST cases I can forgive people who have hurt me (there are a few….). But I really find it close to impossible to forgive people who have hurt my friends. I feel like a spiritual midget saying that, but it’s true.
As a teenager I wasn’t very close to my siblings – too busy being totally and completely self-absorbed. But I remember when some boys in high school picked on my middle sister – I wanted her to point them out to me so I could go out after them. Don’t mess with my people!
I was reflecting on that – wondering is this a character defect? An asset? A side-effect of being first-born? Is Sandy’s fierce loyalty part of Italian heritage?
Or is it the human condition? Is it the same instinct that creates gang violence (“You disrespected my brother…”) and wars. Or – on the other end – is it what led my mother to say “My country, right or wrong, my country” and for people who don’t really like one another to bond due to shared ethnicities, neighborhoods, etc.
Is it loyalty (which seems good) or clannishness (which seems bad)?
I don’t know, but I do know it’s true of me. Don’t mess with my people!
How about you? Do you find it easier to forgive people who have hurt you? Or those who have hurt your friends? Is loyalty important to you? How do you define it? Are you loyal to institutions (sports teams, governments, military organization, corporations, brands)? What does loyalty mean to YOU? I really want to know!