State Rep. Jay Hughes (D): Being a little different is really OK: Column

My recent epiphany came from running for office, knocking on thousands of strangers’ doors, having exchanges on social media and accidental meetings in coffee shops and stores. They reminded me that we all come from different families, backgrounds, good and bad life experiences. It does not have to be that one must be wrong to make us be right. It is also definitely not all about politics — or shouldn’t be. While some of us focus on the latest political issue, the majority of our neighbors are worried about totally different issues inside their homes, from food and utilities to mental health and family crisis….

…What do we do about those outside our bubbles — those with a different religion, race, economic standing or even lifestyle?

What is the goal — really? Do we hope if we ignore them they will go away? Or, do we think they will start doing like we do so we will be more comfortable?

The simple reality is they won’t. They are just different from us. And that is really OK — or it should be. It does not make different evil — just different.

There is so much more in life that matters than politics and parties. Going outside my bubble has made me realize it and grow because of it. Take a chance and reach outside your bubble and consider lives instead of rhetoric and sound bites. You just might be surprised who benefits from it.

Clarion Ledger