Tools That Can Change Your Life: I feel blessed to live in a small mountain resort town with all the benefits like breathing intensely clean air, accessing nature hikes within minutes of my front door and being awed by the site of an elk crossing the main drag from time to time. Small but mighty as they say. One of our many positives is the Company of Fools, “a theatre company driven by the power of the theatrical experience to connect artist and audience, through performing or teaching, we seek to engage, inspire, entertain and transform.” Holding true to one of their objectives, to “connect a disconnected world, one play, one class, one conversation at a time,” COF participated in an unusual worldwide experience to join with 150 other theaters, including the Lincoln Center in New York City, in 50 states and other countries around the world in the reading of The Laramie Project.
From the website: “The life and death of Matthew Shepard changed the way we talk about and deal with hate in the United States. For the past eight years, the legacy of this remarkable young man’s life has challenged and inspired millions of individuals to erase hate in all forms. Although his life was short, it continues to have a great impact on both young and old alike.”
What happened in Laramie, Wyoming ten years ago was truly a demonstration of a disconnection. Two very troubled men disconnected from their souls, taking out their anger in a hate crime that has gone down in history. Memorials in different parts of the country have been established, reminding us that we each have rights and that we do live in a country whose foundation is freedom.
A cast of eight actors read the dialogue from in-depth interviews as a result of the Tectonic Theatre Project that returned to Laramie to learn what happened in the town that was deeply effected by this heinous act in 1999. A variety of individuals were questioned about their memories of Matthew, a young college student who was beaten and tied to a fence, left to die. Several teachers from the University of Wyoming wondered if much had indeed changed. The fence has been taken down, a series of articles from the local paper gave one the impression it was a drug deal that went bad. The two perpetrators, sentenced to life in prison, were interviewed about their current attitude. Russell Henderson said, “I wanted it to stop. I didn’t try hard enough to stop the beating. I made the wrong choice.” The other young man, Aaron McKinney, who as an 8 year-old boy, use to crawl through doggy doors in neighbor homes to steal, felt some remorse that he’d let down his father but that was about it. You may want to visit www.thelaramieproject.org for more details on this project.
While hate-crime legislation is still in process, many believe it was a robbery with heavy globe were shocked by this horrendous act—how could this be? How could this happen? Judy and Dennis Shepherd would not allow the senseless death of their son to not make a difference to the collective consciousness. The Matthew Shepard Foundation was “created to honor Matthew in a manner that was appropriate to his dreams, beliefs and aspirations. The Foundation seeks to “Replace Hate with Understanding, Compassion & Acceptance” through its varied educational, outreach and advocacy programs and by continuing to tell Matthew’s story.”
As always these lessons offer an opportunity to reflect upon. What are your views on those who choose a gay/lesbian lifestyle, same sex marriage, or gay couples adopting?
This day I intend to clear away any obstacle that prevents me from accepting the truth of who I am: joy, abundance, wisdom, beauty and compassion. With each breath I take I embody these qualities.
Hate and force cannot be in just a part of the world without having an effect on the rest of it
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Any advice contained herein or from The Attitude Doc, Alexandra Delis-Abrams, Ph.D., represents the opinions of same, the author/owner of the website, and is intended for the purposes of encouraging self-exploration and personal evolution. The Attitude Doc website, Alexandra Delis-Abrams, Ph.D., articles, and any information contained herein, should be considered supplementary to and not a substitute for advice you may have received from another professional.