I Shouldn't Be Surprised...

I'm usually a pretty upbeat person.  Or at least I try.  I generally and genuinely believe in the overall good of the world.  (And I still do.)

But I have to confess, I'm pretty pissed off and I have been for a while over something that is NOT earth shattering, but IS disappointing.  And in light of what's going on in our world, I shouldn't be surprised...I SHOULD be angry and I am...

Let me backtrack a bit, and this may be repetitive for those of you who regularly read this blog.  (Thank you by the way.)  I am a pretty regular church goer.  (No I'm not going to push my religion on you.)  I'm active in the congregation in several different ways.  In order to raise funds for the church (to keep it running) and to support missions (both local and global), we opened a thrift shop in what used to be the church basement/underutilized Fellowship Hall.  This was back in the fall of 2012 and with lots of hard work for an incredibly dedicated group of UNPAID volunteers (many of which are not official members of the church) it has grown.  Although only open 2 days a week, we have a pretty strong following.  (And volunteers work pretty much every day of the week; cleaning, pricing, organizing, etc.)  Prices are very reasonable.  Generally items of clothing range from $1-$5...of course there are exceptions... (there is/was a fur coat priced at $75).  The organization helps the community and gives back as well donating coats to a coat drive, discreetly providing those in need with basics and supplies etc.

Which is why it really ticks me off when people try to swindle and/or steal from us.  Price tags will mysteriously disappear off an item.  Someone will stuff an item from the outside display into their bag on their way out of the building. A person will lie to a volunteer manning the check out, saying that another volunteer said an item was X dollars instead of the actual price.  It really gets me because what all the volunteers are trying to do is help:  the church, the community, etc.

And I'm really angry because recently someone (or ones) broke into the shop and stole items both big and small.  It's not about the money; I'm guessing that if you put a price on all the items (and I don't know exactly everything that was taken or what the items had been priced at), it would have been less than $500.  It's NOT the end of the world.  But it IS a slap in the face, especially to all those who work(ed) so hard to keep the shop running.

I say I shouldn't be surprised.  After all, in recent years churches and houses of worship from all walks of life have been broken into and robbed.  And you know the people who really need the funds are NOT the ones who are stealing; it's the selfish and greedy jerk-wad(s) who are NOT just stealing from a house of worship, but are effectively taking food from the hungry and clothing from someone who has little or nothing. 

Of course that's not the worst of it.  A little over a month ago 11 people were killed in a synagogue in the Pittsburgh area.  The previous year 26 people were killed during worship in a church in Texas and let's not forget that 9 people were gunned down during a prayer service at the historic Emmanuel AME church in South Carolina in 2015.  And to expand outside of the Judeo-Christian realm, six people died in 2012 at a Sikh temple in Wisconsin.  All houses of worship; places of refuge, desecrated by violence.

So I shouldn't be surprised.  Neither should you.  But we SHOULD be angry.  Angry that sacred spaces have been violated.  And that it has happened over again over again.  Angry that locks and security cameras are needed to protect those who worship.

I'm going to try to channel that anger into something more productive.  In the meantime, if you are thrift shopping and I or any volunteer seems to be a little testy or on edge; just smile and wish us a good holiday.  If we ask you to open your bag so that we can make sure you paid for everything in there, please know it isn't you, but the result of some selfish Grinch(es) who may have forced us into being a little less trusting, but will NEVER take away our charity and good will.  For as disappointing as this all may be, as a young woman once said so eloquently:  “In spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart. I simply can’t build up my hopes on a foundation consisting of confusion, misery, and death."


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Not Guilty

Please Don't Ask Me...

Lowe's LIES