By Tony Scruggs
Some people get a pat on the back, some people get a kick in the butt. Some groups get a pat on the back, other groups get a kick in the butt. If you’ve ever been kicked in the butt, and you’re in a group that gets a pat on the back, then the group is your ‘Magnetic Boot-Strap’! If you’re like me (personal pat, group kick), then you’re Life Experience is the ‘Magnetic Boot-Strap’! Butt here’s the kicker (all puns intended), if you’ve been personally drop-kicked & your group has too, then the Magnetic Boot-Strap becomes the Empathy of fellow members of Team-Humanity (not pejoratives from folks who have Privilege…feel me?)! Do you ‘Know How’ to catch what I’m throwing?
When I woke up yesterday I had two things on my Mind: Mentally Rehearsing my Philosophy of Life (after Meditation, during Yoga & Exercise), and getting ready for today’s Duke Softball game (the name created by our founder, Tony Danza)! But the Universe is Awesome, so instead of being in bed by 10pm, I found myself in a movie theater, watching ‘Know How’ (an incredibly dramatic, & sometimes comedic look at the Foster Care system, with the flavor of a Musical sprinkled on top)!
Having only heard of ‘Know How‘ 10 hours prior to viewing it, after the credits rolled, I told one of the films’ stars (Joshua Elijah Adams, who portrayed the character of ‘Juice’ brilliantly, especially being so different from his own personality) that I found the stories Educational, Inspirational, Painful, Entertaining, & Informational, a perception I also had the chance to share with the director (Juan Carlos Piñeiro Escoriaza aka @JCPE)! I also told both Gentlemen, that I really enjoyed the Hope, & the Promise for a NEW tomorrow, that I experienced (just from a brief shot of two children playing in a subway car)!
As an American of African-Ancestry, having grown up with Academic & Athletic Privilege (Palo Alto, Ca), I told Joshua & Juan that I wasn’t able to resonate experientially, but because of their tremendous artistry, I was gifted with the ability to resonate Empathically! That’s when one of the other films’ stars (Niquana Clark) rolled up, and I shared with her that at times her sayings in the movie, reminded me of an Urban female version of Tony Robbins (“It’s not what happens, it’s what you do with what happens, that makes the difference”)!
The courtroom scenes were creatively clinical, the Collective pain of everyone being portrayed was extremely palpable, the disconnect between those being serviced & those providing services was frustratingly insufferable, & the perpetual cycle of perpetual hazing, to folks (& by folks) in pain, was almost unbearable! Then, a brilliant request for Empathy by Niquana’s character Addie was laid on the table (“How can we push to be different, while we’re still dealing with how things started?”)! Indeed…the next thing I knew, the internal & external wars that were being displayed on screen began morphing into ‘Positive Doable Clear Action Language’, and a Call To Action (text ‘Foster’ to 77177) was made, along with a Fresh wave of Optimism, that this may be really challenging, but one step, one person, one day at a time, we can (as the Grandfather of my friend, @ArunMGandhi) would say, Be The Change! “Do you Know How?” #WeKnowHow! Empathy 1st!
So as you finish this blog, digest what you’ve read, & make plans to see ‘#KnowHow‘, I’d like to invite you to do three things: See, Speak, & Spark:
(1) See each other as members of Team-Humanity
(2) Speak the Language of Empathy
(3) Spark Change via Compassionate Resistance (Empathy with Pro-Activity) Feel me? 😉 Thanks for the Magic Dust Katie
“To Observe without evaluating, is the highest form of Human Intelligence” ~Krishnamurti
I’m Tony Scruggs ‘The Empathy Guy’! “Together We Rise, Together We FLY”