When I was younger, like high school younger, I had very little empathy for the poor. For those down on their luck. I was going through an Ayn-Rand-is-a-bloody-genius phase that I sadly lingered in far too long.
I thought that the poor were lazy, and that if they wanted to change their lives, all they had to do was work harder. I've since grown up and my ideals have evolved. I still believe that there are people who work the system and could be something if they worked harder, but I also recognize that a lot of people are stuck in shitty situations and that, if given a helping hand, they'd gladly pull themselves out of poverty.
We're people. We evolve. Sometimes wisdom shows us a better way to think. Sometimes hardships harden our souls. But we are humans, and we change.
I used to think that overweight people just needed to put down the chips and go for a run. I still think that, for many, that's the case. However, as I entered my 30s overweight by about 30 pounds, I also realized that it's not as easy as it sounds. I've learned compassion and I've learned that things are not always black and white.
We're all humans, capable of evolving.
Senator Rob Portman has evolved a little. He changed his views on gay marriage and equality because he has a gay son. Some people are bashing him for that. Saying that it's political or that he should have supported gay rights regardless of his son. To which I call bullshit.
I think that if more people knew someone who was gay or had a gay family member, they'd be more open to accepting change. I think that we should recognize Portman's change of heart, not condemn him for it's source.
Is it political? Maybe. But then again, so was Obama's decision to support it. And Hilary Clinton's. So what? I will take that support no matter where it comes from. Because in a generation, those politicians who support gay marriage only because it was politically expedient will be gone, replaced by people who sincerely believe it.
Because we're all changing. We're all growing. And that's a good thing.