Tempest Smith Feb 20

by BlackSwan of Memphis 4 Replies latest jw friends

  • BlackSwan of Memphis
    BlackSwan of Memphis

    On February 20, 2001 a young girl, Tempest Smith, committed suicide after being relentlessly taunted and teased for practicing her religious beliefs, Wicca.
    Please donate to her foundation if you can (www.tempestsmithfoundation.org), and wear a black ribbon for Tempest on Feb. 20th.

    What is remembered, lives.

    I remember Tempest Smith.
    I remember that it's never right to make fun of someone's beliefs.
    I remember that sticks and stones can break my bones, but names are
    words of power that can wound the soul.
    I remember that many mocked - and one died.

    I remember Tempest Smith.
    I remember that it takes all types to make a world.
    I remember that nature likes biodiversity. This is true of beliefs and ideas as well.
    I remember that I make a better witness to my own beliefs by simply living them, not belittling others.

    I remember Tempest Smith.
    And I remember that another person’s belief (or non-belief) is just as sincerely held as my own.
    I remember to have the courage to say, "Hey, that's not right," when I see someone being ridiculed.
    And the next time I am tempted to go along with the crowd and tease someone who is "different," I will remember Tempest Smith, and I will remember my pledge.

    Because what is remembered, lives.

    On February 20, 2001, a young girl named Tempest Smith killed herself in Lincoln Park, Michigan, USA. Her suicide was directly caused by the taunting of other students who mocked her because she was "different" and because she was Wiccan. This is a dramatic and extreme example of hundreds of everyday cases of prejudice based on religion. Even those who would never make a racial or gender-based slur may still discriminate based on religion, because many faiths teach that their religion is the only true religion.

    We know that change is made one person at a time. So in memory of Tempest Smith and millions of victims of religious discrimination worldwide, we at the Pagan Pride Project ask you to pledge these three things:

    * I pledge my word and my honor to accept that another's belief, or non-belief, is just as sincerely held as my own.
    * I pledge that when I see prejudice based on religion, be it taunting on a playground or whispered in a board meeting, I will stand and say, "No. This is wrong."
    * I pledge that to the best of my ability, I will respect practitioners of other spiritual paths and treat them with kindness and courtesy.

    Thank you for your generosity of spirit in acknowledging a problem and pledging yourself to its resolution.

    ©2001 Cecylyna Dewr
    Permission is expressly granted to reproduce this document wherever you think it will help. Please include this notice.

    For more information contact
    Pagan Pride Project – www.paganpride.org - (317) 916-9115.
    PO Box 441422 Indianapolis, IN 46244

    *** Religious tolerance affects us all. Whether a person is a devout Christian, Islamic, Jewish or Pagan, we share this world and must find a way to cohabitate in peace. Peace: Meagan***

  • Gretchen956

    Thanks, Meagan. I will try to remember to do this ribbon on the 20th.


  • BlackSwan of Memphis
    BlackSwan of Memphis

    thank you gretchen for keeping tempest in mind.


  • BlackSwan of Memphis
  • Star Moore
    Star Moore

    Dear Meagan..

    My experience with beliefs...is they are as uncontrollable as the color of our eyes, almost ....Like homosexuality, you don't choose it. People can't yell it out of you. If you really think someone's belief system is wrong, kindness and respect and acceptance of the person is the only option I can see. Anything else is futile. My mom would say to me (about JW's) "Why couldn't you have chosen another religion?" I would respond.. "I didn't choose it, it chose me." What can I say? And only God knows if a persons belief system is really wrong or right anyhoo....

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