Our responsibility not to be thoughtless jerks

More than four years ago I read a post on the Matt Walsh Blog entitled, “If I can’t accept you at your worst, then maybe you should stop being so horrible.” I made note of it and set it aside as a “someday” topic.

Someday has arrived.

Matt’s post is long but it boils down to, we have a responsibility not to be thoughtless, hurtful jerks. He refers to the quote: “. . . if you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best.”  

I picture in my mind a person speaking that line.

I see an indignant person off-loading responsibility onto others. I see a person unwilling to try harder to accommodate and collaborate. I see a person who doesn’t believe she needs to give her best because we’re all supposed to accept the hurt and confusion caused by her actions because, well, just because. I see a person who doesn’t believe he needs to think before he acts, speaks or writes.

More than ever our news sources, our social media feeds and our conversations with each other need a healthy dose of thoughtful foresight. More than ever we all have a responsibility to ask, “Is it kind? Is it necessary?” before acting, speaking or writing.

More than ever we need to stop being horrible.




5 thoughts on “Our responsibility not to be thoughtless jerks

    1. Arlene Somerton Smith Post author

      It’s true that we think of it as between partners or close friends, and I wonder about that too. We seem to feel that we can “be ourselves” with them, as in be grumpy, unappreciative, thoughtless, messy, etc. and it’s supposed to be okay. Family members are notorious for assuming that other family members need to accept their shitty behaviour. I don’t think it’s okay. I think those close to us are the ones we MOST need to really try to honour with our best.

  1. roughwighting

    I COULDN’T AGREE MORE! Thankfully, my friends accept me as I am, but I make sure they never see my worse. And I believe in friends who are kind, loving, caring, and thoughtful. We all have bad days, but we don’t ignore each other, belittle each other, or sling biting word-arrows ever. And fortunately, there are more kind people out there than the other. Unfortunately, we seem to have a lot of the ‘other’ in our political kingdom.

  2. Arlene Somerton Smith Post author

    We all have our bad days, for sure,and then people we love do see us at our worst. And then we take responsibility, we apologize, we tell them they deserve better, and we don’t assume that they have to accept that from us for no good reason. I think that’s the difference!


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