"People are People"

I was driving the other day, listening to an 80’s radio station, when the song “People Are People” Depeche Mode song came on. If you were a child/teen of the ’80s, it was a hard song to miss.
Last night, the song came roaring back into my consciousness. We had a swim meet at our pool last night. We swam against a team we have been competing against for the past several years. Every other year we are at our home pool. This was our year to host them.
The meet went well. Swimmers swam. Coaches coached, and the parents from both teams worked together to ensure a smooth night of summer swim team. Claire knew a few of the kids, and a coach, from the other team because she swims with them during the year. She was having a good time with kids from both of her teams. The mood between the rival sides was cordial and friendly, or so I thought.
When the meet ended, my eyes were opened a little to the tensions lurking just below the friendly facade. Some of the opposing team’s parents made disparaging comments regarding our facilities and the people who belong to our pool. It wasn’t necessary or nice. It was a little petty and mean. But it got me thinking about how we viewed their pool last year when they hosted us…we said some inconsiderate things about their facilities. The two pools couldn’t be more dissimilar in their appearance, with one being shiny and new and the other being old and a little run down. But, to me, it is neither here nor there about whose pool is better…ours or theirs. That is why Depeche Mode’s song came roaring back in my ears…
People are people, so why should it be
You and I should get along so awfully.
So we’re different colors.
And we’re different creeds.
And different people have different needs.
It’s obvious you hate me.
Though I’ve done nothing wrong
I never even met you.
So what could I have done
I can’t understand
What makes a man
Hate another man
Help me understand
People are people, so why should it be
You and I should get along so awfully.
Help me understand
Now you’re punching, and you’re kicking.
And you’re shouting at me.
I’m relying on your common decency.
So far, it hasn’t surfaced.
But I’m sure it exists.
It just takes a while to travel.
From your head to your fist
I can’t understand
What makes a man
Hate another man
Help me understand
So, why is it that we are so quick to judge and slow to accept? I don’t get it. I hope tomorrow’s generation can make some sense of this because it doesn’t seem like ours is doing a bang-up job…maybe we just need to start blasting this song again!
Oh, for the love of my children…

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