Once, there was a man on the other side of the bars of my school fence pleading for water. It was around midday and a wicked sun was shining.
He had been walking past the school when he spotted the tap in the playground. Holding out an empty plastic bottle, he begged my friends and I to fill it.
We simply stared. He looked so perplexed and frustrated that we would not acknowledge him. After a few awkward seconds, I walked away.
I gave myself an excuse to ignore his plea: What if he turned out to be some sort of criminal? Fair concern; but the honest truth of the matter is that if he was dressed in suit and tie, if his clothes were slightly more expensive, or if he only looked a little cleaner and not sun-scorched and drenched in sweat, none of us would have hesitated to give him water.
As I relive this event that happened over a decade ago, I cannot help but wonder if humanity is raising unloving children. In our righteous bid to protect them we’ve made children prejudiced, judgemental and untrusting. Leading to prejudiced, judgemental and untrusting adults who struggle to maintain healthy relationships with other humans.
Anyway, maybe I’m wrong. I just wish I had given him water.