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Consideration

Honesty

Altruism

Respect

Action

Consistency

Tenacity

Empathy

Responsibility

This is what character means to me.  Take a piece of paper and write character as I have and see what you come up with.

I’ve chosen to write about character because I think the lack of it is causing an international crisis.  There is too much focus today on personality, and not enough on character.  Since the two are often used interchangeably what do I mean?

Character is a person’s foundation.  It is what makes one uniquely singular.  No two people can share the same character. You can adopt a different personality, but your character is still there.  In other words, you are who you are who you are.

While Personality was closely aligned with character, it has evolved over time to focus more on how a person is PERCEIVED.  When people are talking about personality, it’s usually focused on a person’s social skills, which may or may not accurately reflect who they really are.  Describing someone’s personality is almost always linked to their Reputation.

❝Be more concerned with your character than your reputation, because your character is what you really are, while your reputation is merely what others think you are.❞   John Wooden

I’ve been observing that increasingly, people are more concerned with an individual’s personality than they are their character.  This trend disturbs me because it is based on superficial signifiers, not by intimate knowledge of a person’s character.  It’s a way of filtering people into groups of us versus them, which in my mind, is the basis of dangerous thinking.  If you are one of “them,” you are on the outside.

❝When you choose your friends, don’t be short-changed by choosing personality over character.❞    W. Somerset Maugham

This is playing out in political and religious divisions, and it’s killing our country.  While I disagree with the policies and proselytizations of the Republicans, Tea Party and conservative Christians, I can’t understand the venom with which many of my fellow Liberal Democrats are attacking them.  The diatribes are practically indistinguishable on both sides.  This is not serving our country.  It is a plague of hatred which is insidiously robbing our nation of its character.

Unfortunately, this destructivism is not limited to the U.S.  Look at what’s happening in the Middle East with the Israelis and the Palestinians.  The Israelis have taken us v. them to new heights of craziness.  We don’t like you so we’re going to rob you of your land, cut off your supplies, and essentially starve you to death.  I do not understand why there isn’t furious outrage from the international community and sanctions against Israel by the U.N.

Of course, it’s not limited to the Israelis and the Palestinians.  Like I said earlier it’s a global crisis.  Shiite against Sunni, the Dalai Lama’s forced exile by the Chinese government, and so on, and so on…  It’s insane!

Character, in the long run, is the decisive factor in the life of an individual and of nations alike.❞  Theodore Roosevelt

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.❞  Abraham Lincoln

I see similar issues with Political Correctness.  Since when did it become acceptable to rob people of free speech in the very country that invented it?  Why is it now fashionable to tell people how they can talk, write and even think?  So what if you don’t like what a person is saying.  That does NOT give you the right to curtail their right to express themselves!

I think that the whole idea behind hate speech is our government’s thrist to exercise total control over the citizenry.  If the government doesn’t approve of how you are expressing yourself, you can now be thrown in jail, for LIFE, with no right to trial, no jury of peers, NOTHING.  Hell, if they don’t like what you’re saying, they can have you executed!!!  Why are not more people outraged?  I’ll tell you why, they’re scared shitless.

Censorship is the most hateful — and ignorant — of all practices.  No human being has the “right” to tell another what to think or say.  The only reasonable punishment for hate speech is ostracization and condemnation.

The other misuse of Personality is Character Assassination.  Someone doesn’t like what another person says/thinks, so they attack their Reputation.  Character Assassinations are almost always carried out by people who only superficially know the object of the smear.  Think about it.  If you know someone, I mean REALLY know someone, can you slander/libel them?

What I’ve concluded is that our character is the roadmap for all of our choices.  Our personality is what we allow the outside world to observe.  For humanity to thrive, I believe that we need to shift our attention from personality back to character.  Superficiality is currently in the driver’s seat of the mass media because we have placed it there in our thirst for consumerism.  It’s time to get back to basics and measure a person by their character.

Nothing shows a man’s character more than what he laughs at.❞ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

You can judge a man’s true character by the way he treats his fellow animals.❞  Paul McCartney

I want to thank you for taking time to visit with me here.  Comments are sincerely appreciated, and if you like what you just read, you’d be an angel to share it on social media.  There’s lots of share the love buttons below.

© 2012-2014 Cinema Profound/Sidney Peck  All Rights Reserved.

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