Friday, December 5, 2008

Random Acts of Kindness

Before reaching our feature presentation, a short note. As I typed the title to this post, my mind half wandered and before I knew it I had types "Random Acts of Congress." I am sure that isn't exactly a new joke, but it made me chuckle. Anyway, on to the real reason I am here:

First things first, here is the article that inspired this post. 

There, have you read it? You should, my rant will make more sense that way. In case you are too lazy here are the cliffs notes: 1) Girl at Sheldon High starts a club to perform random acts of kindness. It grows quickly. 2) They start by giving free hugs at a Duck game, and all is good. 3) They try to rake leaves for people in the neighborhood. One of the people they approach decides these high-schoolers (7 girls and 1 guy) are there to burgle her house and calls the cops. 4) They try to hand out cards with nice messages and mints at VRC. Security kicks them out for violating the anti-soliciting rule.

It really is quite incredible. Unbelievable, frankly. Now, I can be as cynical as the next guy. Maybe even more so. I try not to be, but the fact is it is almost impossible not to grow cynical in my job. But here we have kids trying to be good. High schoolers spending time doing something other then  drinking, or trying to score some dope, or partying etc. and what happens? They get kicked out of VRC? An older woman calls the police and reports them as suspicious for trying to rake her leaves? I always knew that the world wasn't a place all full of happy sunshine and rainbows etc. And I know most people know it too. But still, if 7 girls and 1 guy, all of high-school age offered to rake my yard for free? I really don't think I would suspect them of trying to burgle me. And I deal with thieves, burglars and drug addicts on a daily basis. 

I don't know, maybe if it was in Detroit, or certain parts of Los Angeles or something I could understand the suspicion. But Eugene? C'mon! I guess I am just disappointed in people. I seems like such a wonderful idea for the students, and that it got such an antagonistic reception saddens me. 

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