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My 9 year old granddaughter had been watching too much 'election' talk and asked me why people hate other people that they don't even know.
I said, "It started long, long ago, before anything even happened". She said I should write a story about this 'Thing'. I told her I needed her input/collaboration.
This is the result
By Hank Thomas & Amya Dasani LaFlesh
Once upon a time, a really long time ago, before anything ever happened, there was a 'thing'. It was a big thing but nobody knew what it was. People came from all over the place to see it. They would look at it, touch it, and take pictures of it but nobody could figure it out. Engineers came and took measurements. Scientists came and tried to take samples. Philosophers tried to analyze its meaning. Analysts tried to reason with it. Even the police took it in for questioning but nobody could figure it out. Day by day it grew bigger.
As it grew, there was great concern. Hearings were held, articles written and it was talked about far and wide. The people, who did not understand it, began to be afraid. They demanded answers from their leaders. So the leaders came to thing and made speeches but they did not understand it either. The leaders began to blame 'others' for the thing.
People began to be even more afraid. The leaders claimed that they had the answer to this riddle but, clearly, they did not. Some said it was a plot against the government started by who knows who. If we just had more money we could figure it out. Or maybe we could build a fence around it to protect ourselves.
The thing continued to grow but appeared to do no harm. Still the leaders said, "even though we don't understand it, we must do something about it".
The Army showed up one day and general said, "This thing could be dangerous. Tomorrow, let's blow it up!"
But that night, a terrible storm raged. The wind blew harder than it ever had and it was the worst thunderstorm anyone could remember. There were hailstones the size of yams. All night long the storm raged.
The next morning people gathered to watch the stone get blown up. But just before the General gave the order, a young girl named Rosie made her way to the front of the crowd. "Wait, don't shoot, it looks like it's crying", six year old Rosie said. "I think it might be scared."
The General took a closer look at the thing and, sure enough, the hailstones had cracked it and a clear substance in the shape of a tear was coming out. Rosie reached out her hand and touched the liquid, then licked it off of her fingers. The crowd gasped. "No, don't eat that, you don't know what it is." Rosie just smiled. "It tastes like love", she said.
The people asked, "how do you know that it's love?" Rosie replied, "Love doesn't hurt you, love makes you feel good and I feel great!"
The scientists and the engineers came back and recalculated all their calculations. The philosophers and the analysts questioned Rosie intensively. They all got together and after much discussion, they finally agreed. Little Rosie was right. The thing was filled with love and was still getting bigger.
Now, how it got to be here and why it was still growing, still nobody knew. People started blaming each other and there were many fights. Entire countries blamed other entire countries for the thing. The more they fought and argued, the bigger the thing grew. "If it's full of love, then why is everybody fighting. And why is it still getting bigger?"
Rosie spoke up, "I figured it out. The reason it's still growing is because of all the fighting and arguing and blaming and shaming that people do. It's growing because people keep losing their love for other people. Every time somebody hates somebody else they have lost their love for each other. All that love has gathered here in this thing and it just keeps growing. And it's going to keep growing until the hatred and the blaming and the shaming and the fighting stop.
"Maybe", she said, "people should talk about their differences, get to know each other instead of being afraid of each other and then try to find a solution to what they feel are their problems. You know, before it becomes a 'thing'".