My sister-in-law, Nancy, was one of the first people to send me this You Tube video of Susan Boyle. It would be an honor to me if you stopped reading now to watch the video. This 48 year old not terribly attractive never been married and never been kissed (by her own admission) woman sings with the majesty and grace and fluency that on my very best day, I could not begin to imagine.
She is the most beautiful reminder to me that I, and maybe you, too, way too often judge a book by its cover. Too many of us – me, possibly you, certainly the audience watching – forget that when we treat others as less worthy, we don’t prove how superior we are (though, that, I believe is the motivation). Instead, we show how small we can be. Susan is a reminder that nothing replaces an open mind, respect, and the gift of the benefit of doubt.
Even more than that (if there is more than that), she reminds us of the importance of a dream. And a belief in oneself so strong that no amount of mockery or ignorance can take away either the dream or our dignity. Who has the right to mock a dream anyway?
I’ve often said that hope isn’t a strategy. I take it back.
See her follow-up here on CBS, The Early Show, Thursday, April 16.