There isn't enough energy in the world to do all the good that it needs: to soothe emotional and physical wounds, feed the hungry and cure the sick, fix problems, clean up messes.
So it makes me incredibly sad to see so many people expending so much valuable energy to hate and engender hate.
On occasion, I drive past a well trafficked corner in the Galleria area here in Houston: The intersection at Post Oak and Westheimer. And on occasion, there are a handful of people stomping around, protesting homosexuality with signs bigger than their bodies. (They seem unaffiliated with the Westboro Baptist Church, which has become infamous for its outspoken antigay and anti-Judaism protests.)
These protesters are unafraid to be in our faces with their hatred. Few are so brazen, which may make some of us think that this level of hatred is somehow an anomaly. Yet chapters of the Ku Klux Klan exist today, along with upstart Nazi groups. And people have publicly said things about Muslims and Arabs in recent times that make my skin crawl.
Hate—like love—takes an intense amount of energy. Let's consider positive these people could do with that level of energy:
Gather food, cook for, and feed the hungry in local communities, national communities, and across the globe.
Counsel runaways, drug abusers, battered wives, and disadvantaged children.
Help the elderly with yard work and tasks around their homes.
Pick up trash along roadways, in parks and on beaches, and around neighborhoods.
Send soldiers care packages.
Donate unwanted clothes, electronics, jewelry, and household items.
Pick a charity and offer to help with office paperwork and other administrative tasks. (Nonprofits often need this help the most!)
I realize that these people feel morally opposed to gay people and feel disgusted by people of certain races and religions (or even just other races and religions in general). I don't understand them. I cannot grasp why anyone cares about what someone else does or believes when it has no affect on him whatsoever.
However, setting aside the logic (or lack thereof) in their opposition for a moment, what do these people feel they achieve by picketing against groups of people and making others feel afraid? What is their objective? Terrorism? Hatemongering? How does that solve problems? Why not use the energy currently devoted toward negative ends to help communities? There's more than enough need in the world for people to find a positive outlet for their energies that’s in line with or at least not opposed to their political, racial, or religious stances--whether I like those stances or not.
Turn away from the negative to the positive, folks. The world needs it.