Talk Less, Smile More

Anyone else singing the title?

If you are, it's likely because you've heard the "Hamilton" musical soundtrack. Perhaps you're like me, with a teenage daughter obsessed with the soundtrack, the story line and all things 1776-1800. "Isn't Alexander Hamilton dreamy?" says my teenager without a trace of sarcasm.

For those lacking 24/7 "Hamilton" knowledge, Aaron Burr (the guy who shot and killed Alexander Hamilton in a duel) is portrayed as a waffler, a political flip-flopper. He's like a chameleon, changing his political views and colors as needed for the situation.

He advises Alexander to "Talk less, smile more, don't let them know what you're against or what you're for..." in the song "Aaron Burr, Sir". Alexander replies, "If you stand for nothing Burr, what’ll you fall for?"

This American Revolution-era conflict combined with the most recent presidential election got me thinking about my convictions and activism. Do I know what I stand for? Do other people know what I stand for? Does it matter? What am I teaching my kids when I speak up? Or when I talk less and smile more to be agreeable and not have to take a stand?

I've spent some time thinking about this.

What I'm willing to fight for is kindness. Kindness in my family, kindness to strangers, kindness to myself. I believe the world's problems disappear with kindness. I will defend acts of kindness.

You? What do you stand for?