From reading your age references about yourself, I realize you are a few years younger than me, but…
Virginia Hall

Hi Virginia,

Not “heavied out” as you might have concluded from my slow response. Just hit a crazy/busy stretch with work. More importantly, I wanted to sit with what you shared before moving my fingers.

My greatest sense of the willingness you had to provide key points of your life journey was one of gratitude. Both for you individually and my nascent arrival in the Medium community. What I realized was the importance of folks sticking their necks out to break down barriers.

Discrimination of every form. Superiority for whatever reason. Insularity of our existence stemming from closed mindedness, ignorance and intolerance. A tribal mentality that dictates our affiliations. Blindness to our shared humanity.

As an aside I’m bumping 68 and was curious about your comment on my being younger than you. I remember saying my wife is 57. And your avatar image, admittedly almost microscopic, strikes me as a woman in her mid 20's. With my glasses on!

Harry Chapin’s music appealed to me in my college years. One, titled “This Is The Town That Made America Famous”, addresses the “us versus them” dynamic. Hippies whose house was alight and the small town’s firemen responding to the fire. After initial reluctance to give the hippies help, the sentiment gave way to a sense of shared humanity.

No; I’m not on fire and I doubt you’re a firefighter in any literal sense. Allegorically, however, your willingness to speak to my notions of gender roles and sexual identities I see as helping to quell the fires of discrimination and lessening the burden of ignorance. Note: I specialize in run on sentences…

So I wanted to offer my gratitude and appreciation for your earlier remarks. I believe when we step beyond our comfort zones with something resembling open, curious and nonjudgmental hearts the barriers begin to vanish.

On a sad note, the America Harry Chapin sang about is in many ways vanishing in my rear view mirror. “Said the plumber, ‘Let ‘em go it alone’ “ So like the clash of cultures and world views today.

Again, thanks.