I am a big fan of the British street artist, Banksy, whose work is sometimes subversive, rude, shocking, amusing but always thought/idea-provoking. The “punk mum” pictured here got me thinking about the nature of unconditional love and this quote from A Raisin in the Sun:
“Child, when do you think is the time to love somebody the most? When they done good and made things easy for everybody? Well then, you ain’t through learning – because that ain’t the time at all. It’s when he’s at his lowest and can’t believe in hisself ‘cause the world done whipped him so! When you starts measuring somebody, measure him right, child, measure him right. Make sure you done taken into account what hills and valleys he come through before he got to wherever he is.”
As a parent, I hope I love my kids unconditionally; as a school board trustee, I have seen parents rising to the defense of the children they love. Our teachers strain to see beyond disrespect, flippancy and all sorts of objectionable conduct to establish an authentic relationship with their pupils – all for the goal of educating those students.
For some kids, education will quite literally be their salvation. Bless those teachers who understand that, and who recognize the children who need that extra moment of patience, of insight.