“Kindness is a language which the deaf can hear, and the blind can see.” ~ Mark Twain

I am intrigued by this non-profit Funny Farm Rescue and Sanctuary in New Jersey, which provides a home for special needs and unwanted domesticated and farm animals so they can live out their natural lives. They have had over 600 rescued animals. What impressed me was how the animals all get along, no matter how different they are. In fact, some of the animal friendships are what they call misfits.

For example, a blind cat and an orphaned duck are inseparable; as they say, “Every blind kitten needs a seeing eye duck, and the duck needs a warm soft best friend pillow.” A donkey and a llama are best friends, as well as a Jersey steer and alpaca; there is an inseparable bond between an Emu and a goose, and a Pig and a rooster…They all live in harmony, no matter how different they are.

After hearing about the Funny Farm Rescue and Sanctuary, it reminded me of the Song from the 1949 showtune South Pacific. “You’ve got to be taught” (written by Rodgers and Hammerstein).  At the time, South Pacific received scrutiny for its commentary regarding relationships between different races and ethnic groups (James Taylor did a remake in 2020).

Over 70 years ago, Hammerstein’s message of tolerance was largely about race and romance. But on so many levels — race, sexual orientation, class, religion, gender — the challenge of reaching across differences is still relevant today.

 

The song’s message is that prejudice is learned, not innate.

Here are the Lyrics:

“You’ve got to be taught

To hate and fear,

You’ve got to be taught

From year to year,

It’s got to be drummed

In your dear little ear

You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught to be afraid

Of people whose eyes are oddly made,

And people whose skin is a different shade,

You’ve got to be carefully taught.

You’ve got to be taught before it’s too late,

Before you are six or seven or eight,

To hate all the people your relatives, hate,

You’ve got to be carefully taught!”

 

We all can learn so much from those special animals on the Funny Farm, as we are all living as one. Let us teach our future generations the gift of humankind and oneness.

No one can do everything, but everyone can do something, and kindness is something that everyone can do. Start with yourself and then spread it to others. Do your part every day.

 “I don’t care if you’re black, white, straight, bisexual, gay, lesbian, short, tall, fat, skinny, rich, or poor. If you’re nice to me, I’ll be nice to you. Simple as that!” ~ Eminem

Make kindness a habit.

To Your Success,

Peak Performance Coach

You’ve Got To Be Taught…
You’ve Got To Be Taught…
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