Take a walk in their shoes before you judge them. Before you call them “good for nothing, lazy freeloaders, living off welfare,” take a walk in their shoes. Before you call them the N-word, the B-word or whatever four-letter, five-letter, six-letter word you choose to have in your vocabulary, take a walk in their shoes.
Before you judge someone from the race tracks, from the wrong side of the tracks or from their religious tracts, take a walk in their shoes.
Before you judge someone based upon the color of their skin, their religion, their gender identity, sexual orientation, the way they wear their hair, the way they dress or choose not to, take a walk in their shoes. Before you judge this person, or any person, take a walk in their shoes and just see why they do what they do. Some may already feel alone and judged every step of the way.
Whether they’re Jimmy Choos, Walmart specials or from Goodwill, step inside and see why the shoe fits, snug as it does. For only their shoes have seen the paths they’ve taken in the dust, in the snow, through tears, hard work and toil.
And when I mean take a walk in their shoes, I mean do what John Howard Griffin did in his book “Black Like Me,” when he really wanted to see what it was like being black in the early 60s. Do what Martin Luther King, Jr. did when he had a dream for his race. For when you lift up another race, you lift up the entire human race.
We are all a part of one race. But it is not a rat race, marathon or competition. Rather than the human race, it should be called a human walk or a human journey. We’re not here to beat anyone to the finish line, for the finish line is death. Let’s enjoy this walk together. It will give you time to see things from a different perspective, a different story.
Let us walk in each other’s shoes to get a perception of where we are going, where we have been and what we are from this moment on. For we are but a speck in the dust of our own past journeys.
If you’re going to judge, judge from the wear and tear of their souls. And take a walk in those shoes.