Making Miami Better Starts With Us

The Herald’s Jackie Bueno Sousa recently solicited opinions on how to “make Miami a better place”.

I don’t know what ideas she’s personally received, and by the looks of the comment thread on the web site, it’s much of the usual Miami whiner-fest.

How would I make Miami better? I don’t have any grand plan. Don’t need one. It starts and ends with each and every one of us who live here either by choice or by fate. I find that many people who complain about Miami and Miamians don’t realize that they’re part of the problem, not the solution. These folks find it easier to criticize the behavior of others than to reflect on their own attitudes. I see that a lot: the walls of “I’m not like you” go up every time an awkward situation pops up (and let’s face it…life is full of those situations). I guess if we lived in a homogeneous community where everyone looked, talked and thought the same, this wouldn’t happen. But that’s not the reality of south Florida, is it? When the walls do come down, one finds that most people here are a lot like people elsewhere; they want to be treated with respect and will return the respect in kind. I see that a lot, too. Every day, actually. We all have our unique life experiences and no single person’s situation is more or less important than anyone else.

In short: less ego and attitude and more respect from all of us.

Also, instead of complaining, get involved in the community. Act like you care more about your current place of residence than where you moved here from. Whether it’s civic, business or social groups, church, etc., there are tons of ways to meet interesting and genuinely nice people in this town. It does require getting out of ones comfort zone, perhaps (see above paragraph).  But worthwhile efforts rarely come easily.

That’s it. No big plan. No major overhaul of government – just a concerted effort by all of us to be better citizens and to be an active part of this community. Care to join us?

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