This is a letter of thanks to all the “Good Samaritans” out there who make the world a better place because of their willingness to help others. There are many random acts of kindness and they rarely get reported. The media has a mantra, i.e. “if it bleeds, it leads!”
In our culture, the media has a love affair with men behaving badly. Your bad behavior will get barrels of ink, but do something nice and it is too often ignored.
The term “Good Samaritan” comes from Luke 10:30 in the Bible, where a hurt person was ignored by a clergyman and by business folks on the road to Jericho.
He was finally helped by an anonymous caretaker from Samaria, (a community scorned by its neighbors). I don’t know if Americans are more helpful than others, but good people abound throughout the planet.
I remember at time I went to San Felipe over Easter break, and forgot to bring extra gas. Little did I know, all the gas stations run out of gas during “Semana Santa”. I ran out of gas several times on the way back to the states in my beat up Ford van. Time after time, people pulled over, shared gas and helped me on my way. All they got for their time was a smile and an attitude of gratitude.
Over the years many people have been kind to me. Back in the ‘70’s, I hitchhiked around the United States. Wow! That was an act of faith before I believed in God.
I have always believed in people, because on the balance scale, teachers, coaches, neighbors and strangers have been good to me. “What goes around comes around” does not explain others caring for me. When I was young, in many ways, I was a stinker and undeserving, but others gave me their time, attention and love.
I have grown up and learned I have the “give back” in my genes. My mother was a giver. I have even won a few awards, but there is often little acknowledgment of the many heroes in our community and the larger world.
Very often, when something bad happens, people step up to do the car wash, the barbacoa or other fundraisers to help families in need. I cannot say no to kids selling stuff who come to my door. It is often a school fundraiser, but I appreciate the kids getting out and beating the pavement and taking the positive risk of going door to door for a cause. They are often “kid Samaritans!”
If you are a good Samaritan, I would like to get to know you and give you a pat on the back, buy you a cup of coffee, and depending on the budget, maybe a few tacos.
If you know of someone who does good deeds under the radar, please call me with their name or number or email me (Jim 353-2467 or email@example.com). I would like to meet them and hear about the good works.
If you want to praise them out loud, at the end of this column, there is often a place where you can write feedback to The Desert Review. You only need to write 10-20 words to shed a little light on some of the bright spots of valley living. Even if no one calls or writes, I just want to tell you humble helpers out there, thank you and keep up the good works!