“You’ve got to be carefully taught to hate all the people…”

The don't see any difference, so why teach them that there isI have not blogged since, May 5th (I will explain why in a future post), but my Blue Brain and Heart had to write this blog post!

When the heard about the massacre at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida, like so many people I was deeply saddened by the loss of so many lives, the sever injuries, and the hatred that caused the devastating tragedy.

As I thought about this horrific tragedy, the poignant, timely, and timeless lyrics of You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught came to mind. This song was sung in Richard Rogers’ and Oscar Hammerstein’s musical, South Pacific. The 1949 Broadway musical and 1958 film provoked controversy because they demonstrated the issues of racial prejudice that is candidly explored throughout the musical. You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught is the most controversially song that is sung in the musical.   [youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nHKzn8aHyXg[/youtube]    

You’ve Got to Be Carefully Taught
To hate and fear,
You’ve got to be taught
From year to year,
It’s got to be drummed
In your dear little ear
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught to be afraid
Of people whose eyes are oddly made,
And people whose skin is a diff’rent shade,
You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late,
Before you are six or seven or eight,
To hate all the people your relatives hate,
You’ve got to be carefully taught

Now we live in a world where “family” and “relatives” have become fellow members of a terrorist and militant group, race supremacist organization, and/or cultural, national, and anti-immigrant gangs that are dangerously taught!

The poem below by Dorothy Law Nolte, Ph.D. (Copyright © 1972 by Dorothy Law Nolte) simply and precisely states how we can carefully teach our children, ourselves, family, relatives, neighbors, and other people in personal and professional lives.

Children Learn What They Live
If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to feel shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn to feel envy.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with encouragement, they learn confidence.
If children live with tolerance, they learn patience.
If children live with praise, they learn appreciation.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to love.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with recognition, they learn it is good to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn generosity.
If children live with honesty, they learn truthfulness.
If children live with fairness, they learn justice.
If children live with kindness and consideration, they learn respect.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those about them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn the world is a nice place in which to live.

May we all do our part to carefully teach our children, ourselves, and one another to respect, accept, and appreciate our differences, similarities, and Praiseworthy Gifts! 

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  1. Dr. Richard Charles on May 12, 2021 at 9:06 am

    What a wonderful encouragement for universal understanding and love. We all need to learn to be open not closed, embracing not rejecting,
    human not morally robotic.

    • sheila on May 13, 2021 at 2:15 pm

      Dear Richard, thank you for you thoughtful comment. Yes, we all need to be open and embrace one another and our differences. That is why I have written my “What Color Is Your Brain?” books. We need to continue teaching children and adults to appreciate, accept, and respect other people who different than we are!

  2. MaryClare on December 25, 2021 at 12:25 am

    Very poignant in our current world

    • sheila on January 17, 2022 at 4:03 pm

      Dear MaryClare,
      Please forgive this delayed reply. I appreciated your thoughtful comment. Yes, it is poignant in the disruptive world we are living in. Hope my blog and books will help people understand and appreciate one another to create a more harmonious and respectful world!

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