Andy Ross was picking up a few things after work from a grocery store in Washington State, where he lives. After a minute, he noticed a little girl staring at him. Andy was legitimately dirty after a long day’s work in the woods and didn’t think too much about it.
But then as they were leaving, the mother whispered to her daughter, “That is why you need to stay in school.” It was obvious that she meant that she thought Andy was a failure based on her first impression of his looks. Soon though, the mother would have reason to regret her words.
Andy went on Facebook and posted a message that revealed his true identity and completely blew her preconceptions about him out of the water. Andy’s message is one that we’d all do well to remember.
“So I had a very interesting ‘educational’ conversation with a woman and her daughter today. As I entered the store before I got home, a little girl kept staring at me. Which is fine. I know that kids are curious when they see someone, especially as dirty as I was. They ended up in front of me as I was checking out. Little girl still staring, her mother told her to stop staring. As they finished and headed towards the door, I hear her mom say quietly to the little girl, ‘That is why you need to stay in school.’ I figured this was a great time to educate this mother and her 7/8-year-old daughter. The following is our conversation:’
“First, I happen to be a very educated dirty man. I not only have a high school diploma, I also have a college degree and many medical certifications. So assuming that I am uneducated because of my appearance is actually quite ignorant in itself.”
“Secondly, if you are telling your daughter to stay in school because I have tattoos up and down my arms, that will actually suppress her creativity and potentially hinder her imagination as she develops. Again, contradictory to your point ma’am. I am proud of my tattoos and artwork that Forrest Bateman put on my body. It’s a representation of my pride in my country and my service over multiple combat tours as a special operations medic.”
“Third, if you’re referring that statement to the hat (not featured) I’m wearing because it features an elk, you might not understand it. I happen to co-own Evergreen State Outdoors and am proud to own an outdoors company and support my rights to hunt and responsibly be a gun owner.
Finally, I chose to work in a construction industry. I am proud to say that I am a part of building America and I enjoy my job every day. I tried working a desk job when I got out of the service and it wasn’t for me. I enjoy working with my hands and being outdoors. Subsequently, it comes with being dirty some days. I make good money, have benefits, and am able to provide for my family without issue. So my appearance reflects nothing to do with my level of intelligence or pursuing a higher level of education.”
Andy’s post is a reminder of something we should all remember: Never judge a person by their appearance. Please share his post with your friends to remind them of this important lesson!