(Editor's Note: Angelica Garcia shared her thoughts with us after reading painful comments written on a local news stations website after the reporting of a murderer with a facial difference. Through her reflection, she asks how can we all choose kind.)
KUTV 2News’s recent article about a murderer sparked a flood of cruel comments fixated on his bold facial difference. A commenter posted a photo of “Rocky Dennis” from “Mask” & not only did I inform the lady that the movie is based on a real story about a real boy but it is an insult that facial differences are often slapped together with the world of criminals and villains.
All of this is just HOURS after Marco & I talked to 3 6th grade classes about the value of kindness, beauty in diversity & the education about & humanness of kids & adults with facial differences.
I’ve been pretty mild about advocacy but now I realize I need to put the pedal to the metal & crank it up higher. The article did not associate villains & horrid criminals with innocent people with craniofacial conditions but the comments were cruel. It makes me think, what if they see a child with a Craniofacial condition? Will they act the same & react in a horrified way? Well, some people already do & that is unfortunate & something I’m hoping to change. Why can’t people be more aware that different is beautiful.
People, Marco & I talk to schools, youth groups, clubs & any other groups about disabilities, facial differences, the true value of kindness & beauty in diversity FOR FREE & we mostly will do it for free forever to teach people that kids like our late son aren’t monsters, they’re just people, children who are trying to live their life.
You may think you don’t need to talk to your kids, friends & RELATIVES about this, but it never hurts to talk about it & how YOU know at least 3 people who have facial & physical differences & they are people who are (I HOPE) good people who are just trying to help the world be a kinder place.
What else can we do to make this world a kinder place?