And Harvey Dent, of course.

What do I mean when I say “I believe in people”? –Simply just that.

We spend a lot of time classifying people by how they relate to us or how they live their lives. What I’m pointing out though, is that people, as a societal system, are magnificent. People as a whole are magnificent and we forget that at times.

Take for example, the recent tragedies in Boston, Texas and China. People came together for strangers to help in times of need. People always do in times of crisis. Who cares if they didn’t before? They were there when it counted.

Boston hospitals had to turn donors away because they were so full of donated blood for the victims of the bombings. I have to say that I’ve always wanted to visit Boston, but all of the incredible stories of how the community came together has moved it up on my list. Also, Baylor, UT and other Texas schools held drives and events to help out the community of West, TX.

Part of my realization came from a recent trip to New Orleans. Which, by the way:

  1. According to locals, it is pronounced New Or-lens. Like the lens of a camera.
  2. NOT New Or-LEENs.
  3. And definitely not New Or-lee-uhns.
  4. For those of you sophisticated Sophias, that’s /nu oɹlɪnz/ as expressed by the International Phonetic Alphabet.

And of course, there’s the infamous N’awlins baby!

Before my trip, I viewed the state of Louisiana as U.S. territory that should be demoted to a province. I was OK with the 49 United States of America. Hey, let’s add Puerto Rico or one of our other territories! Boom, 50 again. Everywhere I visited and everything I did prior to this trip seemed backwards, behind the times, gross, old, unsophisticated and the people were super weird.

Granted New Orleans is a bit old and some parts of it are gross, but New Orleans completely redeemed my distaste for the state of Louisiana. (I’ve also never been to Baton Rouge besides driving through; so if any LSU students are reading this, I’m not including Baton Rouge in that first assessment.)

I completely generalized the whole state due to a few terrible trips I had that seemed to be in the middle of nowhere. The truth is, New Orleans seemed a lot like Austin in being a city full of character and local love. The people were friendly and  you could see the hometown love glowing with each smile.

It was this trip and a few other changes in my life recently that led me to this realization: people are amazing. All people. Not just my wonderful Society of PRSSA members that I will cherish always, but everyone.

Everyone cares about something, or a bunch of  ‘somethings’. That’s why people are remarkable. You can find something in common with anyone else. While you’re driving, look out your window at a stranger. Believe it or not, you have something in common with that person.

It’s like the principle of  six degrees of separation; I believe it can be applied to interests.

  • I have a puppy. You may not have a puppy, but you may like dogs. Connected interest.
  • I meet a stranger at a coffee shop. Indirect connected interest: coffee.
  • You’re at a social setting and your friend is my friend. Connected through the friend, which should lead to subsequent connected interests.
  • I ‘like’ a page on Facebook and comment on a post. You, on the other side of the nation, ‘like’ it, too. Connected interest.

Those are just a few ways I can provide examples, but it occurred to me that we spend so much time separating ourselves that we forget how alike we are sometimes. You won’t meet everyone you have a connected interest with, but I would be willing to believe that everyone can connect with everyone through at least one interest. That’s the power of diversity. That’s the amazing capability of the human mind’s extensive knowledge system.

And that friends, is why I believe in people.

Here are some pics from the trip!

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With love,


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