Put the impeachment trial of our President on hold. As a matter of fact, put Sunday afternoon on hold. This was the news that brought Americans to a sublime sense of sobriety. Kobe Bryant died today in a helicopter crash in Calabasas, California and for people like me in the unity business, it has done what activists and government leaders have been unable to do for years. It made people civil for today and while we hope that we can maintain that civility beyond the 24 hour news cycle, even if we can't, It's nice to know that we still have the ability to be civil with each other at times like these.
Eventually someone will say something untoward I'm sure, because Kobe, besides being one of the best basketball players of all time, is still "human." And like you and me, in our humanity we make mistakes. But ponder the fact that there has been no mention of his "race" and people of all colors are mourning his passing and then ask yourself, "why can't we be like this every day?" The answer is really quite simple and it's rooted in my favorite word these days, "relationship."
While it may be untrue, fans of athletes and movie stars see themselves in relationship with their idols and in sports it almost never has anything to do with skin color. Therefore you will hear ordinary people grieve and talk about their pain concerning the loss of Kobe, and most all of them have probably never talked to or seen Kobe in person. So if they can have that type of relationship with a person who is that distant, why can't we have that type of relationship with the clerk at Walmart that I see every day or with the person that I see routinely delivering to my mailbox?
THE VALUE OF RELATIONSHIPS
The answer is the value we place in our relationships with people. In this frenzied social media world we are actually less social. A study done a few years ago found that 87% of millenials admitted to missing out on a conversation because they were distracted by their phone. We simply have to place more value in personal relationships. There are a million reasons not to. We can hate others, ignore others and simply not care about others, but we should defer to the one good reason to do it and here it is.
WHY CARE ABOUT OTHERS?
Life will hit us all at some point like it did Kobe's friends and loved ones today and our fame, popularity, position and money won't matter because none of those things can give us a hug and make a soul connection. Relationships give us each other and when we realize that we are all we have, we'll then realize that we are all we need.